RIM rolls out new BlackBerrys, new name
Research in Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) this week rolled out its BlackBerry 10 devices, with rebuilt software and a host of fancy features, and then the company took the opportunity to change its name to BlackBerry. The new start reflects the tremendous change that the company has undergone since CEO Thorsten Heins took the helm about one year ago, and it may be its last chance at salvation, reports Jessi Hempel at Fortune.
Many of the changes made to the BlackBerry devices reflect the needs of enterprise users, Hempel writes. One of the new phones, the Q10, comes with a physical keyboard, and the other, the Z10, comes with a touchscreen. A new feature, called "balance," allows users to toggle between personal and work interfaces. The company is hoping that CIOs will help make it a market powerhouse once again.
As BlackBerry tries its best to regain a strong foothold in the smartphone business, it is relying on a team of industry veterans, many of whom were put in place by Heins. Heins himself, the one-time CTO of Siemens Communications Division, had an insider's view of RIM's troubles, having served as one of its co-COOs. Once he took over as CEO, he eliminated manufacturing partners and sent 30 percent of his employees packing.
Looking ahead, there could be even greater disruption, potentially including licensing the BlackBerry ecosystem to other handset makers.
- see Jessi Hempel's article at Fortune