Black Money Business Jobs : THE DEATH OF THE BLACKBERRY?

Discussion in 'Black Money Business Jobs' started by Kemetstry, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Buh-bye to BlackBerry; I wept, but not too much

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    Suzanne Choney NBC News

    For years, I had a BlackBerry and maybe you still do, too, even though you're in the slim minority now amid all those huge phablets, SamsungGalaxys and slick iPhones.
    BlackBerry's days may be numbered with the company's news that it may be looking at a sale, joint venture or other options. The struggling smartphone maker said it has formed a committee to "explore strategic alternatives to enhance value and increase scale in order to accelerate BlackBerry 10 deployment," its latest operating system, maybe for other purposes than phones.
    Perhaps it's time to give up the stout smartphone and join the rest of us in the 21st century whose digital lives are about so much more than a great keyboard for email, or even a phone for a phone call.
    As in the great tradition of many groups whose names start with "SomethingSomething Anonymous," it may be time to admit it: You are powerless over technology and its changes. And you must change along with it, or be left behind.
    While the BlackBerry may seem like your version of a mobile "blankie," basically it's getting "Zuned out," Chetan Sharma, mobile industry analyst, told me Monday, a reference to Microsoft's once-moderately successful but ultimately failed digital music player.
    Letting go is hard, but take it from me, I know what it's like. I loved my BlackBerry because it was so powerful, so sturdy, so reliable and oh, that keyboard! So comfortable, so accurate.
    For a very long time, the BlackBerry was out of reach cost-wise for many of us. Certainly for me. At the newspapers I worked at, only the top-level folks carried a BlackBerry, and of course, the companies paid for it. Status wasn't about getting an office; it was about getting a BlackBerry. Then you were somebody.
    As BlackBerry started introducing more models with more price-friendly ranges, I bit. I bought. I quickly understood the "CrackBerry" moniker and why it was so true.
    The BlackBerry felt good to hold and good to use, especially for phone calls and emails and text messaging. Its legendary BlackBerry Messenger messaging program was ahead of its time. I actually enjoyed responding to emails using the phone because of that keyboard, which was crisp and efficient.
    Even when the iPhone came out in 2007, I resisted buying it — for more than a year. I realized that it was the most important phone yadayada ever yadayada to be released yadayada. Wary of hype and still enamored of the BlackBerry's keyboard, I clung to it like a savior — until I saw the writing on the screen. And it wasn't BlackBerry's.
    By 2008, with the introduction of an Android phone by Google, and Apple's start of the App Store for the iPhone, real smartphone choice was finally available to consumers. And BlackBerry was looking a little tired, especially as the Web became more important on mobile.
    For a few years, I carried both a BlackBerry and an iPhone. I wasn't alone; a small percentage of tech-obsessed types did the same thing for awhile. It was like hedging our bets; sticking with the trike while also testing out the bike with training wheels. The bike with training wheels quickly proved its value and ease of use over the trike, wheels or no wheels, keyboard or no keyboard.
    While I continued to drag two phones around, it was painfully obvious which one I wasn't using very much, if at all, after a matter of months. The iPhone was the go-to device. The BlackBerry started irritating me when it came to checking websites on the go, its pokiness a problem that even its fine, rubbery keys couldn't outweigh. Then it got its final insult from me: I put it in a drawer that rarely got opened, then moved it to a box in the closet, where it remains today.
    Even with BlackBerry's new operating system this year, and device redesign, it is too little too late


    BlackBerry "ignored the market, they ignored their customers," Sharma said in an email. "The brutal smartphone market doesn’t give too many second chances, especially after not reacting to the changing trends in a timely manner."
    Brutal indeed. While I have felt guilty for casting the BlackBerry aside, I have not looked back. And you, dear BlackBerry users, will find yourself doing the same thing once you've pulled the BlackBerry's plug. You really can. And you really will.
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  2. houserunner

    houserunner Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Well that's the history of "free market", something comes through and initially corners the market and someone else comes in and usurps their position by doing things that the "big-headed" corporation refuse to do... at first and often times when they try to catch up it's too late. Plenty of companies throughout the history of this country that at one point most thought were too big to fail... failed.
     
  3. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Any company today, that rest on today's laurels and profits will soon find itself out of business. Neither education nor innovation can remain stagnant in this market





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  4. houserunner

    houserunner Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Everybody has to realize that there is always someone hungrier than you, now that can lead to a lot forks stemming from that hunger but that is another conversation altogether. Some tend to think I tend to be cryptic in how I post so I will just put it out there, greed, crime, underhanded tactics tie into this as well as hard work and accomplishment on the other side of the spectrum. Like I said, different forks.
     
  5. Omowale Jabali

    Omowale Jabali The Cosmic Journeyman PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I said good bye to my Blackberry near the end of 2007 and never looked back. Perhaps if my data plan was less expensive and I got better service from T Mobile it would have been a loving relationship. I hated T Mobile and their pricey contracts and later tried Vonage then Boost before settling with a cheap AT&T flip phone until I finally got my iPhone nearly two years ago.
     
  6. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Technology is changing to fast to rest on your profits





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  7. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Gotta do what you gotta do







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  8. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

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    iPhone is a good one / but today there are so many out there fighting for the market spot
    the sale pitch and service is the key blackberry fell quick when others created better phones
    Android stuff , all I need to do is make a call , get a call and drop a text , guess i'm one that
    it don't matter as long as I get the price right that fit my pocket......

    why some cheap phone work better then these $500.00 phones and high contracts that
    hackers get in and control ???
     
  9. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    BlackBerry slashes jobs in face of $1B 2Q loss

    September 20, 2013 8:06 PM ET
    By By ROB GILLIES

    TORONTO (AP) - It was once so addictive it inspired the nickname "CrackBerry." President Barack Obama confessed to being among the millions of devotees who couldn't bear to stop tapping feverishly away on its tiny keyboard. Madonna once said she slept with hers under her pillow.
    Then came the iPhone.
    Users newly addicted to Facebook and photo-sharing and Angry Birds started flirting with the opposition. And as more smartphones flooded the market with their supersize Samsung screens and thousands of apps, the BlackBerry failed to keep up with the flash.
    This year's launch of BlackBerry 10, its revamped operating system, and fancier new devices — the touchscreen Z10 and Q10 for keyboard loyalists — was supposed to rejuvenate the brand and lure customers. But the much-delayed phones have failed to turn the company around. At their peak in the fall of 2009, BlackBerry's smartphones enjoyed global market share of over 20 percent, says Mike Walkley, an analyst with Canaccord Genuity. Their piece of the pie has since evaporated to just 1.5 percent.
    Now the company says it will lay off 4,500 employees, or 40 percent of its global workforce, as it tries to slash costs by 50 percent and shift its focus back to competing mainly for the business customers most loyal to its brand. A week earlier than expected, BlackBerry surprised the market by reporting Friday that it lost nearly $1 billion in the second quarter. It's booking over $900 million in charges to write down the value of its glut of unsold smartphones.
    Shares were halted pending the news. They plunged as low as $8.01 when the stock reopened for trading, before closing down 17 percent at $8.72.

    "This is the end of the BlackBerry as we know it," BGC analyst Colin Gillis said from New York. "This is a major pivot. They are cutting half of their employees and they're going to focus on becoming a niche player focused on the enterprise."
    Gillis said he doesn't expect to see a BlackBerry advertisement on television again.
    He said it might be more interesting for a prospective buyer, though, now that that it has announced the restructuring. Gillis thinks it's possible that BlackBerry could survive as a much smaller player. At the end of the second quarter, the company had total cash and investments of about $2.6 billion and no debt.
    "That's probably the feedback they've been getting. They don't do all this if you have a buyer lined up," Gillis said. "Some of the actions may have been driven by feedback by potential buyers down the road. Nobody wants to come in and buy the company and hold an all hands meeting and say, 'By the way, half of you are fired.'"
    Gillis said he can't understand why BlackBerry would release the earnings late Friday, a week early. "That's abysmal," he said. "Did you really need to do it 3:15 p.m. on a Friday? Couldn't you have just waited a week or done it Monday morning?"
    BlackBerry had been scheduled to release earnings next week. But the Waterloo, Ontario company surprised the market late Friday afternoon by announcing that it expects to post a staggering loss of $950 million to $995 million for the quarter, including a massive $930 million to $960 million write-down of the value of its inventory. Revenue of $1.6 billion is only about half of the $3 billion that analysts expected, according to FactSet. The company's expected adjusted loss of 47 cents to 51 cents per share falls far below the loss of 16 cents per share projected by Wall Street.
    BlackBerry said it wants to slash operating costs in half by the first quarter of 2015 so cutting its global headcount to 7,000 total employees is necessary. The company let 5,000 people go last year.
    "We are implementing the difficult, but necessary operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry, and to drive the company toward profitability," Thorsten Heins, President and CEO of BlackBerry, said in a statement.
    BlackBerry said last month that it would consider selling itself. The company reiterated Friday that a special committee of its board of directors continues to evaluate all options. The company said it plans to focus on offering only two high-end devices and two entry-level handsets going forward, with emphasis on the business market.
    "Going forward, we plan to refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user," said Heins. "This puts us squarely on target with the customers that helped build BlackBerry into the leading brand today for enterprise security, manageability and reliability."
    BlackBerry, formerly known as RIM, was once Canada's most valuable company with a market value of $83 billion in June 2008, but the stock has plummeted from over $140 share to less than $9. Its decline is evoking memories of Nortel, another Canadian tech giant, which ended up declaring bankruptcy in 2009.
    Of BlackBerry's remaining employees, thousands live in Waterloo, a university town 90 minutes' drive from Toronto, where everyone seems to know someone who works for the company. Residents have said they've been talking about the company in hushed tones for the past few years.
    "Our thoughts are with those who have lost their jobs at BlackBerry, it is always a cause for concern for our Government," Canadian Industry Minister James Moore said in a statement.
    Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




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  10. Kemetstry

    Kemetstry going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Struggling BlackBerry agrees to be sold for $4.7 billion

    [​IMG]
    Staff reports CNBC.com

    Video: BlackBerry has entered into a letter of intent with consortium led by Fairfax Financial. JJ Burns, president and CEO of JJ Burns & Company, discusses how to play the news.
    Struggling smartphone maker BlackBerry has agreed in principal to be acquired by a consortium led by its biggest shareholder, Fairfax Financial, a Canadian insurance company, for $9 per share, in a deal that would total $4.7 billion.
    The announcement came the same day that Apple, to whom BlackBerry was losing out competing for market share, reported selling a record 9 million of its new 5S and 5C model phones on the first weekend they were on sale -- sending Apple stock up 5 percent.
    By comparison, shares of BlackBerry were halted prior to the Fairfax announcement, and when trading resumed, the stock rose just 1.1 percent to $8.82 in afternoon deals.
    Last week, BlackBerry said it was laying off 40 percent of its work force and expected to post a second-quarter loss of almost $1 billion. It had been looking at "strategic alternatives" for several weeks, including selling itself, or going private.
    "This is a company that needs to go private if they have any chance," Colin Gillis, an analyst at BGC Partners, told Reuters. "They'd be able to restructure outside of the public eye, take a long term view, and run the company at break even."
    Fairfax Financial, sometimes called the Berkshire Hathaway of Canada, is a holding company whose primary business is in insurance. It owns 10 percent of BlackBerry's shares and is led by Prem Watsa, a chemical engineer by training who has run the firm since the mid-1980s.
    (Read more: BlackBerry bought private jet months before layoffs)
    "We can deliver immediate value to shareholders, while we continue the execution of a long-term strategy in a private company with a focus on delivering superior and secure enterprise solutions to BlackBerry customers around the world," Watsa said in a statement.
    Shares in BlackBerry, based in Waterloo, Ontario, had plunged since Friday, when the company warned of a sharp drop in revenue and massive job cuts. The group has until Nov. 4 to conduct due diligence.
    "If I was a Blackberry shareholder I would jump at it," said James Faucette, an analyst with Pacific Crest. "They're actually entering into a period of relative stability. It's going to be hard to improve things going forward. They're going to be hard-pressed to find a more willing buyer.
    "BlackBerry itself is worth less than he's offering," said Faucette.
    Brian Colello of Morningstar said based on the company's disastrous earnings warning last Friday, "I think a deal had to happen and the sooner the better. This is probably the only out for investors and the most likely outcome.
    "The benefit to this sort of takeover is the ability for BlackBerry and the consortium to reinvent the company without public scrutiny. So we won't see any of these warnings or earnings releases that do nothing but disappoint investors. The company can go ahead with its strategy, as it pleases, that's a positive."
    BlackBerry pioneered the concept of on-your-hip email with its first email pagers, offering secure email away from an office, and for years it was the must-have device for governments, businesses and lawyers.
    But in recent years it has lost market share to the iPhone from Apple Inc and to devices using Google Inc's Android operating system. Last Friday it said it will slash 4,500 jobs, or about 40 percent of its work force, and expects to post a nearly $1 billion second-quarter loss.
    Ironically, the announcement came the same day Apple's new $199 flagship iPhone 5S went on sale and people were standing in line around the country to buy it. It was trying to compete with new advanced smartphones by Apple, Samsung and other rivals that helped put Canada-based BlackBerry in the current financial bind.
    As part of a massive restructuring, the struggling company said it set targets to reduce its operating expenditures by approximately 50 percent by the end of the first quarter in fiscal 2015.




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