Following Research in Motion’s dismal financial results revealed yesterday, it appears one particular quote has been blown out of proportion, causing widespread concern the company was about to withdraw from the consumer market entirely.
New CEO Thorsten Heins talked about plans to “refocus on the enterprise business” and that the company should “build on [its] strength” instead of trying to be “all things to all people.”
News sources around the world took this to mean the company was planning to abandon the consumer side of its business, to concentrate solely on the business sector.
As this interpretation of Heins’ word gained traction, so did the blog posts and tweets, until RIM’s Managing Director of Global Sales and Marketing, Patrick Spence, put a stop to it by clarifying the company’s position.
He tweeted that Research in Motion “remains committed to all of our customers (consumer and enterprise) and are enhancing our support/solutions for enterprise.”
Then, speaking to Pocket-Lint.com, he added “the claim that RIM has said it will withdraw from the consumer market is wholly inaccurate.”
Sales of BlackBerry phones have been steadily decreasing recently, with the company admitting shipments had fallen by 21-percent this year alone, so it’s easy to see why the statement was taken that way.
However, given the fact the consumer and business sectors have been converging in terms of hardware, a business BlackBerry wouldn’t be all that different from one designed for the man on the street, a fact proven by the Curve being adopted by young people all around the world.
Before the launch of BlackBerry 10 and its associated hardware at the end of this year, RIM will be introducing some new BlackBerry 7 devices to encourage sales, and could also consider more extreme tactics to ensure its survival, including licensing its new operating system to other manufacturers.
Will reinvigorating its enterprise business and a few BlackBerry 7 phones be enough to keep RIM going before BlackBerry 10 arrives, and will it be the company’s savior when it does?