How did BlackBerry fail? - The Hustle
The Hustle

How did BlackBerry fail?

BlackBerry was unable to innovate away from its keyboard. It also made the wrong decisions on its mobile OS and missed a mistake by locking BlackBerry Messenger to its hardware.

A short drive to irrelevance

As a Canadian, this hurts to say: come tomorrow, BlackBerry phones are gone for good.

The company will shut down text, data, and voice functionality on legacy devices.

It’s an anticlimactic end to one of the biggest corporate downfalls in recent memory.

Blame the iPhone?

When Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone in January 2007, many industry players were skeptical.

Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer mocked it for being overpriced and lacking a keyboard. He predicted it would fail.

Meanwhile, BlackBerry — founded and manufactured by Ontario-based Research in Motion (RIM) — had 10% of the smartphone market (and would rise to 20% in 2009).

BlackBerry pioneered…

… on-the-go communication and email with its keyboard-enabled phones. According to The Verge, its success laid the foundation for its fall:

BlackBerry peaked at 50m+ units in 2011

But the touch screen freight train — led by iPhones and Android smartphones (e.g., Samsung, HTC etc.) — ran it over.

In 2013, the company renamed from RIM to BlackBerry (spoiler alert: this didn’t change its fortunes).

By 2016, it shut down its smartphone manufacturing business. Today, BlackBerry has pivoted into a software firm — valued at $5B+ — that primarily sells cybersecurity.

Meanwhile, Apple has sold ~2B iPhones and is the world’s most valuable firm (*pours out some maple syrup*).

Get the 5-minute roundup you’ll actually read in your inbox​

Business and tech news in 5 minutes or less​

Exit mobile version