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More Details on the Upcoming BlackBerry Tablet aka BlackPad


The BlackBerry tablet is still sitting in the rumor mill right now and there are very few details about what to expect. The Street is already calling it the BlackPad and deeming it a failure while the product is still in its early engineering phase. This sort of judgment is definitely much too early to make, but it doesn’t look great for RIM to follow Apple yet again in a ‘keeping up with the Johnsons’ sort of way. App World seemed like an after-thought after Apple’s success with an embedded app store, and the success of the iPad seems to have engineers and VPs at RIM scrambling around to pull a tablet of their own together. If the BlackPad is actually the product name, it’s yet another indication that RIM is just following Apple’s lead.

According to Rodman Renshaw analyst Ashok Kumar, RIM was going to make an Android-powered tablet, but backed out and has since decided to power their BlackPad with OS 6. Kumar also says the BlackPad will use Marvell’s Armada processor, rather than go with Intel.
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Mike Lazaridis Mentions BlackBerry OS 6 aka BlackBerry 6


UPDATE: Now the audio is available but we still don’t have the video of the touchscreen demo. From the audio, we now know of few more interesting bits of information. For example, we’ll start seeing App World statistics and apparently they’re pretty good (million downloads per day).

While we haven’t heard any press releases or announcements about OS 6 just yet, Mike Lazaridis announced in an analyst call that OS 6, or BlackBerry 6, will be available “in the next calendar quarter.” With WES going down right now, we can expect to hear more about BlackBerry 6 shortly. We’ve seen the screenshots, and apparently Lazaridis gave a demo of a touchscreen interface running BlackBerry 6.

There is also some pretty big news that we’ll have to confirm tomorrow, which is what devices will be eligible for an OS 6 upgrade, as well as the new Webkit browser. Lazaridis apparently said that the company’s WebKit browser is part of 6, and that the rendering engine has implications throughout the platform. This means that the upcoming WebKit browser may not be available for OS 5 devices. We’re not sure exactly which devices will get an OS 6 upgarde, but Lazaridis says that they’ll “do [their] best,” but he’s not making any guarantees.

Latest comScore Data Shows BlackBerry Dominates US Market


Recent data from comScore suggests that RIM controls 43% of the smartphone market in the US. The data has been collected from November 2009 to January 2010, and suggests that there are 42.7 million smartphones users in the US. According to these numbers, you would expect over 18 million people to be using a BlackBerry in the US during the period recorded. Another interesting data point relates to the growth rate during this period.

According to comScore, BlackBerry grew by 1.7% from November to January, while Apple only climbed 0.3%. These numbers are vastly different than the global growth rates recorded by IDC. Analyst market share reports are continually coming out and it’s always important to take notice of how the data is collected before running to the bank with these numbers.

RIM Investor Update for Q3 Fiscal 2010



With the fiscal 2010 Q3 earnings conference call happening this Thursday, investors and analysts are getting ready to scrutinize Jim Balsillie’s speech as well as their accounting details. Raymond James analyst Steven Li is expecting both good and bad news. The good: RIM has launched a number of successful devices. The bad: Motorola’s Droid is eating sales at Verizon and low Bold 9700 pricing may be hurting Curve sales. Gus Papageorgiou, a Scotia Capital analyst, is recommending investors to stay in for the 4th as he expects it to be a favorable quarter.

Analysts talk about upcoming BlackBerry slider



Analysts at Kaufman Bros are saying that RIM will be launching a touchscreen BlackBerry slider with a QWERTY keyboard, along with an updated web browser.

Kaufman said they are picking up strong indications of a new form factor under development that would be a cross between a touchscreen BlackBerry Storm 2 and a physical keyboard BlackBerry. They said, “from our understanding, this new BlackBerry would have a full touchscreen plus a pull-out physical keyboard. It would be similar to others from HTC, Palm, Motorola and others but of course sport a distinctive signature BlackBerry industrial design.”

We have heard rumors of such a device being codenamed Talladega, but nothing much else. It would still be cool to see a BlackBerry Storm slider though. Also, a touchscreen device would be a great launch device for the new WebKit-based BlackBerry Browser.

Analysts at Gartner predict the top mobile OS for 2012



Gartner has released a slightly revised version of their outlook for the 2012 mobile operating system. The latest predictions put Symbian as the top OS, followed by Android, with BlackBerry in third and iPhone in fourth.

The interesting part of this research is the positioning of BlackBerry relative to the iPhone. The advantage of BlackBerry is that it will always have enough devices to cover the entire gamut of potential smartphone users. While you may not love every device that RIM ships, there will always be a device for you.

While Gartner believes that Open Source OS markets are the future, we aren’t seeing much proof of this. Developers aren’t making enough money on either platform for the devices to be of much of use. We have said this countless times on BlackBerry Cool, it’s the software that determines the winner and hardware is fast becoming secondary with regards to the competitiveness of a device.

Gartner has placed a large degree in confidence in Nokia after their partnership with Microsoft. The thought is that the partnership will allow Nokia to deliver Office Mobile, as well as full SharePoint integration, allowing Nokia to steal some of RIM’s enterprise market share. Perhaps this may look good to an analyst at Gartner, but it simply won’t happen. Unless Nokia comes out with a product that rivals BES, hosts an equally robust developer community as well as provides the security of a BlackBerry, the partnership is just talk. If SharePoint is the only advantage, you will have to prove that it is significantly better than what Wicksoft can offer.

Overall, the predictions are as follows:

1. Symbian
2. Android
3. BlackBerry
4. iPhone
5. Windows Mobile

While we may not know the final outcome until 2012, rest assured it’s the developers who will decide the final victor. So if you’re a developer looking to make that killer app, don’t let Gartner become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Go to the brand you trust and ultimately, go to the brand that’s making you money. I guarantee you it’s not Symbian, Android or Windows Mobile.