Wednesday, October 12, 2011

RIM: I Can't Stay Quiet Any Longer

Last week I did a personality assessment that showed I don't always blab what I think. Great news! I wasn't sure.

I've been pretty quiet on the RIM front for the past few months. Discovering I was known for my dim point of view on this Canadian tech 'icon' seemed to slow me down a bit.

Well, today I can't take it any more. 

Anyone who doubted whether this company is done or not shouldn't have a lot more to think about. Three days of world-wide service interruptions that have killed email and bbm (and other web services?) should be more than enough. Blogs and newspaper reports (never mind the Facebook updates) out of RIM's last remaining key markets like India and the Far East reflect a tide that is turning brutally against RIM.

It's one thing to have an antiquated and underwhelming interface, operating system and app selection - it's another thing to shut your users out of a service they view as being essential.

Over the last few months as RIM has been dying, it's been fascinatingly sad to watch Canadians in particular stand up - against all odds including Apple, Android, even Microsoft (Microsoft?!) - for their beloved Canadian technology dream.

Too bad. Because RIM hasn't deserved any of that loyalty.

Listen. Seriously.

RIM got lucky.

They truly innovated a brilliant technology - and a lucrative revenue model. But that's it.

At the end of the day RIM was/is nothing more than another tech start-up.Their leadership is/was egotistical and distracted. Their infrastructure and organization was hastily built and poorly lead. They valued technology over customer experience - and ultimately customer preference. They were late to the marketing game and what marketing they had was amateurish and feature, not benefit oriented.

Now they've unveiled the ultimate weakness. Reliability.

Incessant knocking of RIM's inferior handsets was always met with smug reassurance that RIM's network architecture was somehow more secure - and reliable.

Now that's bullshit.

I'll say this again. I never wished RIM's demise. What I always wished is that they would somehow smarten up - stop being so arrogant - read the signals - and get with it.

That's never happened. And now it's too late.

It's sad.

Really. Sad.

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