One thing we learned today, RIM co-CEO, Jim Ballsillie, won’t lose focus if he finally gets permission to buy an NHL franchise.
Dude has plenty of time to watch hockey now, now that RIM has somehow managed to *beat* wretched Wall Street expecations by being, well, a lot more wretched than anyone could have imagined. Just today, for example, we learned of RIM’s extremely close affiliation with each of these:
- Quarterly net loss
- “Substantial change”
- Write off inventory
- ASP plummeting
- Revenue plunging
- lack of accountability
- Three of top five executives out
- considering a number of options
- “no guarantee of success”
- “not conducive to the efficient operation of our business”
- “what makes a Blackberry a Blackberry”
I have been traveling throughout the day — and it’s been positively beautiful in America’s beautiful Middle West — so no doubt you’ve already seen the terrible numbers RIM offered us today. Likewise, you know how far how fast $RIMM has fallen.
Which is why, instead, I will focus on Microsoft. And Steve Ballmer. And Windows Phone.
Because RIM is the canary.
Yes, I’ve said a thousand times that ‘the smartphone is the computer’ and ‘the mobile web is the web’ and, yes, these *still* are not Microsoft strengths.
But, damn, how is it possible they are still at the starting bloc?
RIM makes Blackberry. Blackberry are good phones — good smartphones. I know of what I speak. They have great keyboards, solid design, good build quality, strong security, a large presence in the enterprise, millions of high-end customers, connections with every carrier that matters, a growing presence in Asia and South America.
The RIM OS, the one that exists now, is well-made. Texting/messaging, email — these are probably best done on a Blackberry.
Want apps? They got apps.
A well-known brand name? Got it.
And they are dying.
Android and iPhone are killing them. How can we be a few days from Q2 2012 and there not be a *massive* Windows Phone presence at every carrier retail outlet? At every Best Buy or equivalent?
As I write this, I would not be surprised if there are 200 million total iPhones sold. Well over 125 million iPhone 4 and above.
Over 100 million iPads.
Over 300 million iOS devices. And growing fast.
iWork, which I do not like as much as Office, is available for these 300 million devices, for $30.
Any game, any app I want I can get right now. Any book or song or movie.
Is Microsoft so terribly insular, is Steve Ballmer so removed from what is actually happening, as to believe that Microsoft can just bully its way into this market? Do they still believe they are the Microsoft of old? And/or that Apple is the Apple of old?
I have high hopes for Windows Phone. Legitimate high hopes. Only, each day they delay fully blasting their way into this market, they fall further behind. At some point, even they will have to accept there is simply no possible way to catch up.
And if Microsoft is an also-ran in the smartphone wars, then they become an also-ran in personal computing. Because the smartphone is the (personal) computer. And this gets more truthful every day.