Plight And Flight Of Blackberry


This week two important events took place in the corporate sector. One was the launch of BlackBerry 10 OS and the other was the selling off of the Consumer Lifestyle division of Philips Electronics. While the world was eagerly waiting for the former, the latter did not come as a surprise either.

Yes, for all those who did know, the Consumer Lifestyle division of Philips, which was on the verge of failure has been sold to the Japanese company, Funai Electric Co.

With the arrival of unprecedented products from Apple, Samsung or maybe even Sony, the old war-horses like RIM (Research In Motion) and Philips were declared obsolete; and the pace at which it happened left everyone gasping for breath.

But there is one thing that differentiates these declining empires from each other.

While BlackBerry tried to change its approach by launching two new products and a new operating system, Philips preferred leaving the business.

Accepting the weaknesses and moving towards a change is a big step for a company, one that requires a huge amount of planning and investment. And that’s what BlackBerry did, because apart from BlackBerry Messenger and push mail services, there was nothing in the RIM phones that attracted a consumer.

Philips, on the other hand, never thought of  making a product that would compete with an iPod or a Bose. There was nothing that it did to woo back the leaving consumer base.

But what is a better option? To change or to exit? Who is right – BlackBerry or Philips?

To answer this question one needs to understand the Big and small of the corporate world, which is based on two models:

Build and Sell” or “Sell and Build

In the Build and Sell model, companies make huge investments in developing, testing and improving their infrastructure, before attracting the consumer with big promises. They strive towards efficiency while ensuring that they are considered the best in what they sell.

On the other hand, the sell and build model requires meager or small amount of investment. They sell products and change or improve them based on customer feedback .This model is more prone to problems and hence leads to dissatisfaction among customers. But surprisingly, this is what many new companies have been doing.

RIM-Blackberry, needless to say, was based on the “Build and Sell” model. They had invested heavily in providing the most secured network to the corporate world. Imagine its apathy when they went back to ground zero to lay foundations of a new empire, of which they had no clue. The easier option was to sell off the technology or partner with another one in equal needs like them.

Instead, they focused on the basics and looked to bring the best of both worlds – the user interface similar to iOS or Android and the communication abilities of their own BlackBerry.

The end result came out to be one which has left people buzzing with excitement. Unlike Philips, RIM has done everything it could do to retain its customers.

No one can anticipate the public response to Blackberry 10, but as the saying goes – with change comes hope. Rest assured, it will definitely find some new loyalists. As for Philips, they need a bigger Tube-light to brighten their fortunes and bring back the glory days when they were a household name.

Karan Aylawadi

Image Source [×348/tech-blackberry-10-4.jpg]