March 9, 2013


BlackBerry 10 looks like a huge accomplishment, well beyond expectations. The company may have a future even if sold.

President/CEO Thorsten Heins spoke at the 2013 Tech Leadership Conference. He spoke well, smiled and took audience questions. I listened but couldn't understand what he was saying and kept hearing what he left out.


Thorsten claimed that mobile providers want a choice besides Apple and Samsung. Maybe, but Windows Phone could be the answer. Choice paralyzes. We manage to live with duopolies like Coke/Pepsi, Windows/Mac, Google/Bing. Isn't the real question what the end users want? As buyers, we have lots of choices already.

TLC 2013Mobile Computing

Do you know what mobile computing is? Apparently, that's what really sets Blackberry 10 apart. The devices are mobile computers. This is apparently a paradigm shift.

Since I'm drafting this blog post by voice into web-based Trello (my review) on my Galaxy Note 2 while walking around the room, am I not engaged in mobile computing? I use my notebook computer and tablet in different places. Isn’t that mobile computing too? Perhaps the paradigm shifted years ago when free WiFi became available in coffee shops.


Multitasking is touted as another advantage of the new Blackberry. I didn't understand this either. I think I already multitask on my phone and tablet. Maybe there are technically superior options, but I don't see what's missing. I'm not compelled to seek another solution.

Besides, research shows that we’re lousy at multitasking (Wikipedia). We waste more time and make more mistakes. Imagine a device that helps us focus. That would be a breakthrough.

Jeans And Tie

imageApparently BlackBerry is optimized to run our business and personal lives on the same device. Maybe that’s like playing Solitaire on your company computer or wearing runners with your suit.

It's easy enough to have 2 devices: one from work and one of your own. That also helps with work/life balance.

If you're working for a company, you don't know how long you'll be there. Having your own phone with your own phone number has merits. You then have privacy from corporate snooping and control of your contacts. Nowadays, there are good plans at affordable rates, especially if you use a smaller carrier.

Blackberry seems to think their customers are the intermediaries: the mobile phone providers and corporate IT departments. Apparently, you cannot copy/paste from a personal email to a corporate email. That's good if you don't trust your employees. It's inconvenient if you're doing real work. There are probably simple workarounds such as copy/paste to an online Word document. If you have another phone, you can always take a photo or dictate the text. Pen and paper works too.

The Future

BlackBerry is an important company. I'd like to see them rebound but not enough to switch back from iOS and Android (see the perfect smartphone). There was no compelling reason that I could understand. If you're already a Blackberry user, you may be very happy with the changes. Feel free to share your thoughts below.


Podcast 210

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PS Are you planning to switch?

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