Friday, September 20, 2013

BlackBerry - "Expect us to let you down"

BBM will be released on Android
and Apple this weekend.
 Has BlackBerry severed its last leg to stand on? With the announcement that BBM will be available to Android and iOS devices this weekend, the one time communications giant is raising a lot of questions. In the consumer smartphone era BBM was one of the main reasons for BlackBerry users to remain loyal, however with the launch of iMessage, WhatsApp and other communication apps came a hoard of Android and Apple converts.

Why there is still hope. BBM still has one redeeming quality, years of paid research and development leading to a clean, crisp communication app. Between old BlackBerry faithfuls and users who are just looking for a cleaner, more encompassing, user friendly experience, you can expect a large number of downloads. This might explain the Saturday download time for Android users and Sunday slot for Apple owners. Kudos to BlackBerry for being optimistic and planning ahead, the last thing they need is for a server overload on this crucial release.

If a large rate of adoption is seen among the masses for BBM there still might be potential for BlackBerry to survive as a secure server/software company. Their days as a hardware provider may be running out though. With declining sales and stock piling up of the Z and Q10 devices, users just aren't seeing what they need in a consumer unit. The decline in Q10 sales is especially concerning for BlackBerry as it indicates those that were qwerty dependant are willing to go touch for a much broader app experience.

Along with the BBM announcement BlackBerry unveiled the new Z30. This may be their final attempt to revive their lost stranglehold on the business world and finally bring forth something appealing to the average tech consumer. Though with Apple and some Android devices being certified to the minimum security standards of government use, the hardware security features is becoming less of a draw for potential business clients. Have we seen the last hardware launch from BlackBerry? I'm suspecting we have.

UPDATE - Monday Sept. 23

Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice and I'm a sucker.  I have once again been duped by BlackBerry failing to release BBM on Android and iOS platforms this weekend. An Android version was leaked early Saturday morning which apparently received over 1.1 million downloads, however this leaked version brought to light some issues with the app which halted the roll out. BlackBerry officials have said that they are working tirelessly to correct the issues. They have not announced a new date for the release. I suppose at this point in BlackBerry's downward spiral of a life cycle I should have known better to believe this launch would roll out with minimal friction. I guess I figured a brand in such turmoil would stop at nothing to create a perfect rollout for their last landmark property. Once again with all eyes on them they have let their faithful (and those just rooting for the Canadian underdog) BlackBerry followers down. With yet another delayed release on the roster BlackBerry has permanently damaged their brand by embedding the promise "Expect us to let you down" in every BlackBerry product. 

No comments:

Post a Comment