by Sunil Ajwani | StonesDetroit.com
I remember sitting in my friends garage one summer evening back in July of 2009. The reason i remember it so well is because i just recently purchased my Palm Pre webOS phone which i absolutely loved at the time. However, that being said, i felt a little out of place at my friends that evening because all of my other six friends had their Blackberry devices and they were all chatting on their BBM ID’s and were absolutely loving their BlackBerry keyboard driven devices. Of course i wanted more from my smartphone then just a BBM and keyboard. I wanted an iPhone at the time but the iPhone wasn’t available on Sprint and my only other option was a Palm Pre webOS phone. The phone was very cool at the time because i had a keyboard that was like the BlackBerry and had a wonderful Graphical User Interface and mobile operating system called webOS that featured a multitasking system called cards. Please click on this link to see this multi-tasking video for webOS card’s system. I still wish someone would use this system! At that time, i told all of my friends in the garage that Blackberry better get their act together otherwise Apple will crush them and that Android phones were on the rise. They all looked at me like i was crazy because they loved their Email Service, Keyboards, and BBM ID’s. It’s amazing how much of a stronghold BlackBerry had on their customers just because of those three major services. The one thing that BlackBerry was not doing well was innovating in the APP marketplace and offering more entertainment and social networking factors with their smartphones. Mobile users were starting to gravitate towards the iPhone and the Android phones because of the wonderful APPS that were being created and the growth of each platforms APP store was growing faster then Blackberry. Of course, soon shortly after that summer and into 2009/2010, the mobile landscape in the US started to change RAPIDLY. Apple’s iPhone was starting to take off even more then normal by becoming available on more then just one carrier (i.e. AT&T). Apple’s iPhone came to Verizon and then shortly thereafter came to Sprint. Google’s Android operating system started to elevate on key smartphone manufacturers such as HTC, Samsung, and LG models. Once 2011 and 2012 came, the whole mobile landscape was all about the Samsung Galaxy S2 and S3 phones featuring the Android operating system. Google’s Mobile operating system was taking over the mobile smartphone landscape. All of a sudden BlackBerry, the once darling of the smartphone world got shoved from the #1 ranking in 2009 back to #3 as of 2013. According to comScore latest November 2012 U.S. Mobile Subscriber market share, 123.3 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones (53 percent mobile market penetration) during the three months ending in November, up 6 percent since August. Google Android ranked as the top smartphone platform with 53.7 percent market share (up 1.1 percentage points), while Apple’s share increased 0.7 percentage points to 35 percent. RIM ranked third with 7.3 percent share, followed by Microsoft (3 percent) and Symbian (0.5 percent).
Let’s fast forward to today, we are now 10 days away from the Hail Mary pass from the Canadians in the North. Research in Motion (Stock Ticker: RIMM) has gone through a roller coaster of a ride in the last 3 years. Click on this link to look at their stock chart from 06/20/09 – 01/14/13. Just horrible! The company who was once the high flying darling of the mobile smartphone world has laid off many employees, missed many quarterly earnings, fired top executives, reshuffled board members, and cut costs like no other so they could survive. You also had rumors a few months back of IBM looking to purchase BlackBerry’s Email system. What else has the company done in Waterloo, Ontario for the past 24 months? Let’s just say they have been quietly working in their labs perfecting their new mobile Blackberry 10 mobile operating system. Some of the exciting new features include BlackBerry HUB, BlackBerry FLOW, and what the company calls “THE BEST KEYBOARD ON A GLASS SCREEN” to date. Wow, those are some fighting words! Yes, the Canadians are not going down without a fight. I’ve watched a lot of videos showcasing the new features and i want to share them with you. Please view the videos below to see some of these exciting new features.
BlackBerry HUB and New Keyboard Experience with HEAT MAPPING
BlackBerry FLOW Experience
German Video review of the new BlackBerry Z10 Hardware, OS, and Usability
German Video review of BlackBerry Z10 Voice Control, Apps, and Predictive Keyboard
Instagram-Like Photo Filters on BlackBerry z10 devices
January 30, 2013 will be BlackBerry’s Hail Mary pass to world. Some may say they are very late to release a smartphone because many people purchased an iPhone and/or Samsung Galaxy phone during the past holiday season. Maybe it’s just at the right time because Microsoft may finally have a user friendly mobile phone operating system on the new Windows 8 platform running on Nokia phones called Lumia 920/820. Recent sales figures from Nokia on Lumia model phones were impressive during the holiday season and the past month. HTC , Samsung, and Acer are all releasing Windows 8 phones soon. Research in Motion (RIMM) needs to hit a GRAND SLAM with these new devices. One will be the Blackberry Z10 (Candybar Style) and the other will be a Blackberry X10 (with Keyboard style). Some of the initial rumored specs are as follows:
BlackBerry Z10, will have a 1280 x 768 4.2-inch HD display, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage and an 1,800mAh battery. The BlackBerry X10 smartphone model with a keyboard will probably have the same internal specs and both models will have two cameras. The front-facing camera will be 2 MP with a 2x digital zoom and 720p video recording. The back camera should be 8 MP and include a flash, auto focus, 1080p video recording and a 5x digital zoom. The phone is also said to have Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS, as well as NFC chip for payment systems.
I personally own an iPhone 4S and to be quite honest i am very happy and satisfied with my Smartphone and i know many friends who recently purchased a Samsung Galaxy S3 or an iPhone 5. The launch of these two new smartphones for BlackBerry will be the most important in the history of the company. Everything is riding on these two new phones. Can the great mobile company up in Waterloo, Ontario make a comeback? I think competition is always good. It makes a healthier market for the consumer. Get ready for January 30, 2013 because it only 10 days away! BlackBerry will be having their press conference in New York City to announce all the details.