The BlackBerry Bold was the aristo phone.
Girls loved it. I don’t know why exactly but many female students with working-class boyfriends really loved that phone.
Even Kim Kardashian is a fan of the Bold.
But now, BlackBerry will no longer make phones.
This is a sad time. All the phones we grew up with are no more. Nokia, Trium, Sendo, and now BlackBerry. Motorola is just barely hanging in there.
People say it’s because they didn’t innovative fast enough. Who knows, maybe that’s true. People also said a similar thing about Nokia. They said it was because Nokia’s marketing was atrocious. Then they said it’s because the Finnish company let Android and iOS kill it.
When Microsoft acquired Nokia’s hardware business, CEO Stephen Elop said these unforgettable words: “We didn’t do anything wrong, but somehow, we lost.”
It was a devastating loss. So, now, people call them a failure. They’re calling BlackBerry a failure, too. They use words like “death” to describe the new state of the businesses. They write headlines like ‘What the death of BlackBerry means for you’.
Words like that make failure even more painful. They are annoying when thrown about by people who have no idea what it means to do your best, to obey all the rules, to break and bend some rules, to be ahead of your time, and still lose.
It’s ridiculous that some of these critics and reporters sensationalise the story. They forget that sometimes what they call death is just a transfiguration.
For instance, now that BlackBerry is a software company, it’s likely to make more profit than when it was a hardware company.
Also, dead companies have come back to life before. Apple came back from the dead. Microsoft’s second act is quite unbelievable and some are even using the word sexy to describe it. This is Microsoft we’re talking about.
However, I’m sure management is what makes all the difference. The difference between a company that lives and the one that dies is in who runs it. If it’s run by a John Sculley or a Steve Jobs. If it’s run by an Abacha or an Obasanjo.
And then there’s all the irrational internal politics and second guessing that bring down businesses. The unnecessarily duplicated layers of checks and balances. The self-congratulation. The lies. People deceiving themselves and each other for so long so as not to look bad. Everyone pretending to be better than everyone else.
It’s quite easy to picture a dying company as a group of fat campers huddled around a campfire, convincing one another that the roar they just heard isn’t from a lion, that’s it’s just one of their stomachs giving a happy growl.
Until it’s too late.
There are companies like that here, too. Their bosses are lost in the past, resisting the present, oblivious of the future.
By the way, Yahoo may also be dying.
I love BlackBerry. It’s genius keypad should be licensed to somebody- maybe Lenovo since that Chinese monolith likes to buy everything.
And BBM should get sexier before WhatsApp snaps it’s neck and grills it for dinner. Also, maybe there will be some other parts of the BlackBerry business they can still chop off and sell. They are probably looking into that right now. I mean, it’s obvious, right?
Maybe I should get a BlackBerry just for sentimental purposes– to feed my nostalgia. I think the best BlackBerry ever made is the Classic. It has everything at the perfect weight and it runs Android apps. Right now, I miss my Classic. I want my Classic back. Oh my god. This is serious.
That soundtrack sounds dirgelike, right?
Rest in peace BlackBerry, if you’re truly dead. But I hope you’re not.
[UPDATE] BlackBerry, it turns out, is not entirely giving up on the phone business. It’s just letting others do it (paywall). Going forward, the Canadian company will license its name to other manufacturers to make BlackBerry phones. If those ones can make good enough profits doing that, that will be their business.