Research in Motion co-CEO Jim Balsillie was pushing for a big change in the company’s operations just before he left, Reuters reports.Balsillie wanted to sell access to RIM’s network to carriers. The carriers could then sell that to consumers.
The plan would have let the carriers use the RIM network to offer inexpensive data plans, limited to social media and instant messaging, to entice low-tier customers to upgrade from no-frills phones to smartphones.
But the talks with carriers led to discord at the highest levels of the troubled Canadian company, and Balsillie resigned as a director soon after he stepped down as co-CEO. His former partner at the helm, Mike Lazaridis, still has an active role.
This is an interesting idea. If RIM’s network could support it, and carriers were on board, it sounds like a good idea to us.
RIM needs to figure out alternative revenue streams. Its core handset business is dying, and might not even be profitable anymore.
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