On Wednesday, July 4th, BlackBerry CEO, Thorsten Heins wrote an op-ed piece exclusively for the Canadian newspaper The Globe and Mail, titled "Don't Count BlackBerry Out."
Don't count BlackBerry out.
In recent weeks, it's become fashionable for pundits and market watchers to alternately eulogize Research In Motion as a fallen pioneer and demonize management for not chopping up the company to sell for parts.
As President and CEO of RIM, I understand the frustration and impatience of RIM's shareholders and their eagerness to see the company start to surface the underlying value we all know exists at RIM. But we do not believe RIM is a company at the end. Nor do RIM's current challenges hint at a larger Canadian problem of not being able to sustain successful technology companies.
Technology, and particularly mobile computing, is a globally dynamic industry where innovation is as likely to occur in Waterloo as it is in Seoul or Palo Alto or Stockholm.
Rather, we believe RIM is a company at the beginning of a transition that we expect will once again change the way people communicate. In technology, it is not if you have to change, but when you have to change, and we are in the earliest days of truly mobile computing – an era in which people interact with the world around them in ways we could barely imagine just a few years ago. With BlackBerry, RIM created the framework that gave people their first taste of an untethered yet completely connected life.
As we prepare to launch our new mobile platform, BlackBerry 10, in the first quarter of next year, we expect to empower people as never before. BlackBerry 10 will connect users not just to each other, but to the embedded systems that run constantly in the background of everyday life – from parking meters and car computers to credit card machines and ticket counters.
Those are big promises, I know; and some doubt whether RIM can pull it off. I am the first to admit that RIM has missed on important trends in the smart-phone industry – especially in the consumer domain, focusing on its core value system for successful products and services. We are working diligently on BlackBerry 10 in order to provide a compelling experience for our loyal enterprise customers and consumers. While we are in a very competitive and constantly changing market, customers benefit from this competition and continued innovation.
As this market grows and includes more people in more countries, there is more room – a true need, really – for alternatives. We see this every week with our developer community, who are attending sold-out BlackBerry 10 developer sessions around the world to leverage our platform and ecosystem in order to create and innovate for their communities. That is why RIM has chosen to pursue a strategy that eschews the homogenized sameness of competing ecosystems. To help with that task, we have reshaped the executive team and recruited telecommunications industry veterans with proven track records of success.
Innovation is never easy and rarely understood – but it is exciting.
To that point, some of what I read and hear is thoughtful and insightful; some, frankly, is just plain wrong. But the facts about RIM's business provide reason to believe that we can succeed, even as we take painful but necessary steps to focus our resources and build a lean, nimble organization focused intently on bringing BlackBerry 10 to market.
As some pundits write RIM's obituary, the company's global subscriber base continues to grow, to more than 78 million people in 175 countries. In many of those countries – some of the fastest growing markets in the world – RIM is the top smart-phone; and in some, RIM devices account for the top three spots. We have relationships with 650 carriers around the globe; RIM's reliability and security make it the first choice for countless government agencies and are part of the reason more than 90% of Fortune 500 companies deploy BlackBerry in their enterprises.
RIM has no debt. The company also has more than $2 billion in cash on its balance sheet, and generated $710 million in operating cash flow in its first quarter.
Simultaneously, RIM is undertaking a corporate overhaul that we expect will reduce annual operating expenses by more than $1 billion by the end of our fiscal year. Unfortunately, that requires us to become a much more focused and smaller organization.
These are just the steps we're ready to announce. As has been reported, RIM has hired outside advisers to help me and the other members of the executive team think about the business in new ways and to explore a range of alternatives that leverage our core strengths and build on the BlackBerry brand.
When I became CEO just over six months ago, I knew this would be a difficult and challenging job. RIM was – and remains – at a crucial juncture in its history. In response to our tough quarterly results last week, our employees received thousands of emails from around the world from retail customers, carrier partners, developers, family, friends and neighbors expressing their support and loyalty to BlackBerry. They are – like many of us - BlackBerry people by choice.
It reminded me just how much opportunity and promise there is within RIM, and how much of what makes BlackBerry special stems from our status as a small-town Canadian company.
While some who have never made the drive to Waterloo pontificate about software they have not seen or devices they have not touched, developers around the world are getting increasingly excited about the possibilities BlackBerry 10 offers. They see that innovation remains a core principle stretching back to RIM's earliest days above a bagel shop.
So don't count BlackBerry out.
Thorsten Heins is President and Chief Executive Officer of Research In Motion, Ltd.
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According tothe Wall Street Journal's Joel Schectman,Appleasked the standards groupEPEATto revoke certificationfor all of its computers and monitors. EPEAT giveselectronicsa "gold," "silver," or "bronze" rating depending on things like how many toxic chemicals are used to make them, and how little power they use. Some of Apple's products,like the iMac desktop computer,had achieved EPEATGold certificationbefore Apple voluntarily relinquished it.
Because federal government guidelines require 95 percent of the electronics purchased by American government agencies to be EPEAT certified, this might mean fewerApple electronicsin government venues. The Wall Street Journal article also notes EPEAT certification is given "preference" in hundreds of American universities, and that many require it.
There aren't many laws that limit what sort of environmental or human rights impact electronics sold in American stores are allowed to have, though. And besides that, EPEAT certification is only one way to measure such things, based around yesterday's less-integrated designs. So Apple's decision won't limit access to its electronics for most people who buy for themselves.
I was out with friends and this discussion came up as one of the fellows mentioned how he could do this. He grabbed the other person’s phone and actually did figure out the password!
I don’t know why I had never thought of this! Thanks to Android Forums for this!
In movies and on TV sneaky spy types have been able to gain access to password protected files and areas by using the smudges on a keypad to figure out a password. That is all fiction from film though right? A group of researchers claim that thosesmudges on your smartphone screencould in fact give away your password.
The attacks have been termed “smudge attacks” and the report comes by way of researchers at the University of Pennsylvania. According to the paper, a hacker could use the smudges to infer the password. In the research, the team took photos of a screen and used a program to analyze the photos.
According to the researchers, over 90% of the time the software was able to find the correct password. The study use smartphones based on Android that use a graphic pattern to unlock the phone. The team is now looking at whether heat trails on a touchscreen could create a similar vulnerability.
Seriously what is the world coming to? Do you think the Carriers have the ability to cap overages? Uhm yes! Who really would want to pay or could afford to pay a $200,000 roaming bill? We train smartphone users on understanding what they are doing that ‘could’ potentially give them a heart attack when they view their phone bill after a trip! Even a $500.00 overage leaves a bad taste in your mouth after a great business or personal trip. I have had too many clients come to me after the fact with enormous bills, $400, $2500 , $17,000 or more. Each of these could have been mitigated had they understood their plans, how their smartphones work and some confusing terminology.
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BlackBerry Internet Service BIS, is set up on your BlackBerry. It allows you to forward your personal or business email to the handheld. Some accounts like GMAIL will also sync contacts and calendar but may not. BlackBerry Desktop Software is used to sync Calendar, Contacts, Tasks and Notes if it is not sync’d by the email provider.
BlackBerry Enterprise Server. It gives your BlackBerry access to a corporate email and everything is wirelessly sync’d so you do NOT need BlackBerry Desktop Software to sync. BES gives the BES administrator control over what the devices can and cannot do. For example, the BES admin may push a password policy to the device and the end user must abide by it. There are over 500 policies that can be pushed.
In conclusion (from CrackBerry)
BIS provides a direct link between your phone and your wireless provider, but after that all traffic essentially goes out over the Internet. Any and all security becomes the responsibility of the BlackBerry application in question, so there are no security guarantees. That said, BIS does a good job at providing Internet and email support and, best of all-- you don’t have to set anything up.
BES provides what is essentially a direct link between your phone and your office environment. It’s very secure, flexible, and gives your company control over all aspects of the BlackBerry. There is a certain ‘baseline’ security inherent in all data transactions, and your IT department can always disable your BlackBerry if it’s been compromised.
Smaller companies, or individuals, are well served by BIS—it provides you with almost everything you need. Larger organizations, with their own internal mail systems and other infrastructure, should definitely be using BES.