Hardware is one thing, but for many smartphone users it’s all about the software. It’s one reason that many believe Apple’s “simple” iOS platform is still so popular. For BlackBerry owners, the largest update and refresh for the mobile platform brought plenty of new features to the mobile operating system, and a whole new way to interact with your device. But obviously Research In Motion can’t stop innovating or changing things up, and even if the company has every intention of drawing their new QNX-based software (which will premiere on their tablet device, the PlayBook) into all BlackBerry devices sometime in the future, for now it looks like BlackBerry 7 is where the magic will happen for RIM.
I say this because right now, BlackBerry is still set in the professional market. While there are plenty of avid BlackBerry fans out there who don’t consider themselves professionals or business executives, it’s obvious that RIM still sees their handsets intended primarily for that market. At least, they did up until recently. The Waterloo-based company has been trying to change that perception since the launch of BlackBerry OS 6, and strive even harder with QNX.
RIM will bring a lot of features from QNX into BlackBerry 7. Maybe not all of them, and perhaps not all of the features that they’d like, but there will be inspirations from the PlayBook that make their way to the BlackBerry smartphones some time later this year, or early next. What those are is anyone’s guess at this point, but we know that social networking will be put at the core of the OS, which is good to boost that “we’re not just for business professionals” mantra they seem to be chanting now.
And this is where the magic can certainly happen for RIM. This is where the game can change for BlackBerry devices, and where rejection can turn into adoption again. We know that Verizon higher-ups believe that BlackBerry is still a strong contender, and now it’s time for RIM to show that that is indeed the case. I know that I’m rooting for them.
If RIM can show that they’ve got social networking down, as well as other types of media (movies and music especially, and gaming too), then there’s no reason why the company can’t propel the BlackBerry name back up to the top. BlackBerry 7 is where the game can change for not just BlackBerry, but all the major smartphone manufacturers out there. It’s time for RIM to make it happen.
What do you think RIM needs to do to make this happen? Do you think it’s even possible at this point? Or has RIM fallen to the wayside, and let the competition take over completely? Let me know in the comments below.