Internal RIM letter written by senior executive: 'I have lost confidence'

Posted by Knowlton Thomas

In an open letter addresses to Research In Motion's senior management team, a senior executive begins his piece with the blunt but telling sentence, "I have lost confidence."

BGR claims it has confirmed the author's identity but did not reveal it. The lengthy letter attacks co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis for their shortcomings. It also picks apart the company's strategy and senior managers, inadequate marketing, the launching of incomplete products, and more.

Some snippets of the letter:

• Let’s obsess about what is best for the end user . . . We simply have to admit that Apple is nailing this and it is one of the reasons they have people lining up overnight at stores around the world, and products sold out for months. These people aren’t hypnotized zombies, they simply love beautifully designed products that are user centric and work how they are supposed to work. Android has a major weakness — it will always lack the simplicity and elegance that comes with end-to-end device software, middleware and hardware control.

• There is no polite way to say this, but it’s true — BlackBerry smartphone apps suck. Even PlayBook, with all its glorious power, looks like a Fisher Price toy with its Adobe AIR/Flash apps. Developing for BlackBerry is painful. Our SDK / development platform is like a rundown 1990′s Ford Explorer. Then there’s Apple, which has a shiny new BMW M3… just such a pleasure to drive. Developers want and need quality tools. If we create great tools, we will see great work. Offer shit tools and we shouldn’t be surprised when we see shit apps.”

• When was the last time we pushed out a significant new experience or feature that wasn’t already on other platforms?

• 25 million iPad users don’t care that it doesn’t have Flash or true multitasking, so why make that a focus in our campaigns? I’ll answer that for you: it’s because that’s all that differentiates our products and its lazy marketing.

• We missed not boldly reacting to the threat of iPhone when we saw it in January over four years ago. We laughed and said they are trying to put a computer on a phone, that it won’t work. We should have made the QNX-like transition then. We are now 3-4 years too late. That is the painful truth… it was a major strategic oversight.

The letter can be read in its entirety here.

RIM's stock had gone up in the morning but falled into the red on the news.

Company:
BlackBerry
Website:
http://www.blackberry.com
Location:
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Research In Motion (RIM), a global leader in wireless innovation, revolutionized the mobile industry with the introduction of the BlackBerry solution in 1999. Since then, BlackBerry products and services have continued to change the way millions of people around the world stay connected. With the launch of BlackBerry 10, we have re-designed, re-engineered and re-invented BlackBerry. Not only did we introduce a... more


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Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton Thomas

Knowlton is the managing editor of Techvibes. Based in Vancouver, Knowlton has been published in national publications and has also appeared on television and radio. Previously he was an editor for New Westminster weekly The Other Press and served on its board of directors. When not working, Knowlton enjoys playing tennis or otherwise enjoying the outdoors. more



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