RIM CEO Heins: we're not in trouble, in fact we might even license BlackBerry 10

RIM CEO Heins: we're not in trouble, in fact we might even license BlackBerry 10As the man in charge of struggling Research in Motion, Thorsten Heins obviously can't afford to be negative, but despite an ominous start to his reign you do get the impression he has a realistic picture of just what state the company is truly in.

So it's interesting to hear his thoughts on RIM's future as we get into the second half of surely the most difficult year in the company's history, and he certainly had plenty to say in a new interview published by The Telegraph.

There was a lot of predictably defiant talk, backed up (also predictably) by some hand-picked stats showing things aren't as black in BlackBerry land as a lot of people are making out.

Clearly Heins also knows that the media increasingly see RIM and Nokia as being largely in the same gloomy state: he points out that RIM's platform isn't “burning”, a reference to Stephen Elop's famous February 2011 memo on Symbian, and questions why Windows Phone gets so much “credit” when sales remain so poor.

The obvious “why not go Android” question came up, to which Heins responded that RIM did seriously consider whether to abandon BlackBerry OS and simply adopt Android (and let's not forget the whole PlayBook running Android apps thing), but concluded (just as Nokia did) that it didn't want a me-too future without the ability to stand out from the crowd.

In fact, with BBM at the heart of that appeal – which Heins clearly believes is still RIM's ace in the hole – he actually believes things will go the other way. Considering the company's shrinking resources, Heins argues that producing the “hero” BlackBerry 10 devices and letting other companies bring the platform to the entry level may be the way forward.

“We don’t have the economy of scale to compete against the guys who crank out 60 handsets a year,” he says. “We have to differentiate and have a focused platform. To deliver BB10 we may need to look at licensing it to someone who can do this at a way better cost proposition than I can do it. There’s different options we could do that we’re currently investigating.”

That obviously requires the all-important release to be a surefire winner, and Heins insists it will be. “We don’t have the resources like a Microsoft; we have to place one bet and make it right; we don’t want to go for an intermediate step. It comes out in the first quarter and I think a lot of people are going to be surprised.

“The teams are working relentlessly day and night, at the weekends – it’s a once in a decade change that will see us through the next ten years.”

Optimism is a great thing, Thorsten – how about we meet you back here in 2022 and we'll see just how right you are?

Read more about: Blackberry OS

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33 comments

Pondlife  Aug. 2, 2012 at 21:08

Those two comments don't really tally. Not sure which company would fancy taking a chance on making budget versions.
And their current platform is pretty much burning as nothing will be able to upgrade to bb10

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:04

There was a lot of predictably defiant talk, backed up (also predictably) by some hand-picked stats showing thanks aren't as black in BlackBerry land as a lot of people are making out.

lewis is that you??? oO a round of applause to those of us who spot the mistake in the above quote...

martinjjames / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:13

There was a lot of predictably defiant talk, backed up (also predictably) by some hand-picked stats showing thanks aren't as black in BlackBerry land as a lot of people are making out.

lewis is that you??? oO a round of applause to those of us who spot the mistake in the above quote...


Don't suppose that counts for me does it? :$

Been fixed now - at least the one that I spotted has, anyway :)

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:16

There was a lot of predictably defiant talk, backed up (also predictably) by some hand-picked stats showing thanks aren't as black in BlackBerry land as a lot of people are making out.

lewis is that you??? oO a round of applause to those of us who spot the mistake in the above quote...


Don't suppose that counts for me does it? :$

Been fixed now - at least the one that I spotted has, anyway :)


it will always exist in comments... your no better than lewis now martin feel ashamed ;)

TJ Skywasher  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:18

Message deleted by TJ Skywasher

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:20

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:22

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:25

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

Pondlife  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:32

On the nokia front are they the largest wp7 manufacturer and if so who was before them, come to think of it if not who still is? ;) I know it's almost like asking who sold most hddvd players.
Mainly wondering if Samsung could end up having the most successful wp8 and android phones of the year.

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:33

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:34

On the nokia front are they the largest wp7 manufacturer and if so who was before them, come to think of it if not who still is? ;) I know it's almost like asking who sold most hddvd players.
Mainly wondering if Samsung could end up having the most successful wp8 and android phones of the year.


i think nokia are now due to them being the only ones to make any atm... samsung were before...

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:35

On the nokia front are they the largest wp7 manufacturer and if so who was before them, come to think of it if not who still is? ;) I know it's almost like asking who sold most hddvd players.
Mainly wondering if Samsung could end up having the most successful wp8 and android phones of the year.

No, Nokia will always have the best WP devices, due to MS' money being pumped directly into them. They're like Nexus devices for WP, but on a hardware limited OS. Basically, no-one else stands a chance (or is willing to pump cash into a "dead in the water" OS).

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:35

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:38

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

A good point, which in all honesty, I'd overlooked. The patents could be great for getting some money out of Samsung and Apple.

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:41

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

A good point, which in all honesty, I'd overlooked. The patents could be great for getting some money out of Samsung and Apple.


its because your not as smart as me :p

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:46

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

A good point, which in all honesty, I'd overlooked. The patents could be great for getting some money out of Samsung and Apple.


its because your not as smart as me :p

That does rely on Nokia having a shed-load of valuable patents (which I don't even know if they do). Nokia never seem to sue anyone...

Treab  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:49

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

A good point, which in all honesty, I'd overlooked. The patents could be great for getting some money out of Samsung and Apple.


its because your not as smart as me :p

That does rely on Nokia having a shed-load of valuable patents (which I don't even know if they do). Nokia never seem to sue anyone...


nokia have alot of money coming in due to making their patents available to used under frand etc i think they don't sue mostly because no-one is stupid enough not to pay them...

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 2, 2012 at 23:53

Not in trouble, but they may licence BB10 out? That means they're in trouble and need to licence it out to make ends meet, who are they trying to kid?!

themselves i feel... bit like elop...

Elop isn't kidding himself, his job was to screw Nokia up for a MS takeover...then MS decided they didn't want it any more.

Well, that's my theory anyway.


well theirs 3 options as i see it...

1) microsoft wants to buy nokia and hes their to drop the share price so they can buy nokias patents...

2) elop is a disaster whos blind to the reality..

3) natural wastage... nokia just didn't know how to keep up....

I think it's option 1, but MS decided against the whole idea when sending in Elop to soften Nokia up went a bit too well, and he totally destroyed Nokia's reputation and value.


depends on what they want from nokia... the company or its assets....

A good point, which in all honesty, I'd overlooked. The patents could be great for getting some money out of Samsung and Apple.


its because your not as smart as me :p

That does rely on Nokia having a shed-load of valuable patents (which I don't even know if they do). Nokia never seem to sue anyone...


nokia have alot of money coming in due to making their patents available to used under frand etc i think they don't sue mostly because no-one is stupid enough not to pay them...

I forgot, normal companies settle out of court. It's just Apple who want to have competitors removed from the market via excessive litigation.

Pondlife  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:07

No, Nokia will always have the best WP devices, due to MS' money being pumped directly into them. They're like Nexus devices for WP, but on a hardware limited OS. Basically, no-one else stands a chance (or is willing to pump cash into a "dead in the water" OS).

Hmm that's a point, also that no one can add in software extras either to make them stand out. WP8 could reset the clock a little though as Samsung are releasing at least one phone, so must be willing to pump a little cash in.

Treab  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:27

No, Nokia will always have the best WP devices, due to MS' money being pumped directly into them. They're like Nexus devices for WP, but on a hardware limited OS. Basically, no-one else stands a chance (or is willing to pump cash into a "dead in the water" OS).

Hmm that's a point, also that no one can add in software extras either to make them stand out. WP8 could reset the clock a little though as Samsung are releasing at least one phone, so must be willing to pump a little cash in.


or they are just taking an android phone and reskinning it... i.e. the sgs2 with wp8...

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:31

No, Nokia will always have the best WP devices, due to MS' money being pumped directly into them. They're like Nexus devices for WP, but on a hardware limited OS. Basically, no-one else stands a chance (or is willing to pump cash into a "dead in the water" OS).

Hmm that's a point, also that no one can add in software extras either to make them stand out. WP8 could reset the clock a little though as Samsung are releasing at least one phone, so must be willing to pump a little cash in.


or they are just taking an android phone and reskinning it... i.e. the sgs2 with wp8...

^^^ What he said.

Pondlife  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:40

Well that goes back to where we were before as that sounds like it could be a best selling wp8 phone.

matt101101 / MOD  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:44

Well that goes back to where we were before as that sounds like it could be a best selling wp8 phone.
Not when compared to Nokia's exclusive apps, pretty build and other exclusive stuff that MS only offer to Nokia. Also, not the point, but why would you buy a WP8 S2 over an Android S2.

satchef1  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:44

Nokia sued Apple because Apple wouldn't pay up.

I think Apple's itchy trigger finger isn't actually quite what it seems to be honest. They don't seem in the slightest bit bothered by infringements by RIM, Microsoft, Palm, Symbian or the various mobile Linux variants (Maemo, Meego, Moblin, Tizen, Bada, etc.). It's just Android. If the view within Apple is that Google stole Android (and to be honest, would anybody be surprised if Google actually did?) then the aggression of their legal team isn't really that surprising. It's just a shame that it's OEMs rather than Google themselves that are feeling the heat.

Pondlife  Aug. 3, 2012 at 00:55

Well most of those did pre-emptively infringe apple didn't they?
Besides you'd spend more hiring one lawyer than you'd get from all those linux variants put together.

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