BlackBerry Torch and Blackberry 6 OS

August 3, 2010 § Leave a comment

Just coming off the previous post, RIM have announced their “next-gen” phone as well as an update to the Blackberry OS software. My reaction is this: indifference. RIM needed to really pull their finger out and deliver something at least on par or better than what’s currently available. They haven’t, and my gut feeling is that they’re never really going to. That 40% slice of your customers who’re thinking of switching over to Apple or Android next time they buy a phone? Say bye-bye to them, RIM, because they are so going to do that.

Here’s the new phone, the BlackBerry Torch. By all means, check out the technical specs and the video gallery to get a better idea of how it’ll work.

Now, from my point of view, putting a 624 Mhz CPU in your flagship phone at this point in 2010 is a bad joke. Simply put, it’s already obsolete tech, and this also goes for the low res 480×360 display. The rest, such as the wi-fi, the 5 MP camera, the memory, the fully functional browser, the 3G, etc., all seems fine – but, so what? RIM didn’t need “fine”; it needed “awesome”. This is not an awesome phone; it is not an exciting phone. The new Blackberry 6 OS looks to have a cool UI, seems easy to use and has the necessary features – but, again, so what? Nothing new to see here, folks. This is a very boring phone…

And it’s confused, too. I actually think the form factor looks quite sleek, but RIM really need to let go of that hardware keyboard. It’s old-fashioned now and slightly embarrassing, all told. It demonstrates a clear lack of  conviction in their design on their part; it looks like a device that doesn’t really know what it wants to be. I understand that the QWERTY hardware keyboard is kind-of a stalwart of the brand, but this was RIM’s “do or die” moment. You cannot afford to be that conservative in the mobile tech market; you just can’t.

In a couple of years’ time RIM’s BlackBerry may still exist, but they will merely be a footnote in the history of smartphones. In this market, fortune favours the bold, and the innovative.

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