I feel more strongly than ever that RIM has lost not only its map but the compass as well.
Earlier this week, Research In Motion held its annual, major event — BlackBerry World — and made a handful of announcements about where the company was headed.
The first wasn’t entirely a surprise; RIM introduced the latest in a line of handsome — if utilitarian — smartphones, dubbed the Bold 9900. The device is an attractive, powerful handset that puts the classic BlackBerry QWERTY keyboard alongside a high-res capacitive touchscreen. The Canadian phonemaker also brought Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer on stage to tout Bing as the default maps and search engine in future BlackBerry products, and gush about investments the company was making in RIM’s enterprise infrastructure. But the real shocker this week wasn’t new phones or Microsoft collaboration. It was the news that RIM would be zig-zagging into an entirely new OS version — OS 7.
For many companies, this might seem like good news, but I don’t think that’s the case here. Based on the announcements, I feel more strongly than ever that RIM has lost not only its map but the compass as well, and may have let the sea carry it too far and too fast. Keep reading, and I’ll explain why.