BlackBerry maker Research In Motion has a message to deliver.
RIM has delayed the release of BlackBerry 10, its save-the-company product; is poised to let go of 5,000 employees, reducing its staff by nearly a third; has hired advisers who may suggest the company split into two, if not sell off an important component of its brand; and on June 28 announced quarterly losses of $518 million. Still, the Ontario-based company firmly believes it will successfully emerge from this tough transition, said Peter Devenyi, RIMs senior vice president of enterprise software.
Devenyi spoke with eWEEK July 5, answering questions but above all insisting that morale was high and the companys outlook bright. Days earlier, CEO Thorsten Heins did the same on a Canadian radio program.
The level of commitment that exists within this company, to see us through, is strong and truly inspiring, Devenyi told eWEEK. As we see and talk to the employees ¦ there's tremendous confidence that exists within RIM that we will succeed in getting through this transition.
Devenyi added that if one has to go through such a transition, its nice to do so with $2 billion in cash, no debt and as the No. 1 smartphone brand in many countries around the world.
Given the delay of BlackBerry 10which Devenyi and Heins have been quick to point out is not simply a new smartphone or operating system upgrade, but an entirely new platformHeins has said that RIM is encouraging enterprise customers, many of whom are still using BlackBerry 5 and 6 devices, to upgrade to BlackBerry 7though these devices will not be upgradeable to BlackBerry 10. Is such advice not sending them down a dead-end path?
Devenyi said that the Bold 9900 and other BlackBerry 7 devices are fantastic devices.
The capabilities we bring with BlackBerry 7including BlackBerry Balance in the BYOD [bring-your-own-device] market, including the liquid graphics capabilities, the speed, the new browserit is a remarkable advance over some of the older BlackBerry devices. ... As [enterprise customers] see them and use them, it doesn't take much to get them to upgrade, Devenyi added.