ORLANDO, Fla. BlackBerry maker Research In Motion packed a convention center here May 1, offering the world its first glimpses of the RIM BlackBerry 10 platform and its newest BlackBerry smartphone, the Alpha Dev. Final versions of both will be out later this year.
RIM also showed off a bit of its new CEO, Thorsten Heins, who in January stepped up from a very behind-the-scenes chief operating officer role to replace longtime co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis.
"Until this year, I've sat myself in the audience with you," the Germany-born Heins told an enthusiastic crowd in his opening remarks. He also buttered them up a bit.
BlackBerry users, Heins said, are all about success. "You respond faster, you're agile, you're nimble¦ BlackBerry creates success and lets you take care of your business. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the core of BlackBerry, and I'm proud to be a part of a company ... that helps people to achieve success on a daily basis.
BlackBerry users, it turns out are, really are rather super users. Heins flashed through a list of statisticsthey download more apps than users on other platforms (34 percent to 22 percent on other devices) and access more productivity tools, 91 percent to 65 percent of users on other platforms.
The challenge for RIM now is simply to convince more people to become BlackBerry users.
With BlackBerry 10, Mobile Fusion and close ties to the PlayBook"Playbook is the on-ramp to BlackBerry 10," said RIM Vice President of Global Alliances Martyn Mallickthey just might achieve this.