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Friday, November 11, 2005

Blackberry - Bumpy Road Ahead

We covered recently that the next versions of Microsoft's mail-server and PocketPC software, due in a few months, will include support for BlackBerry-style "push" e-mail. Getting mobile e-mail to work is far harder than it looks "The complexity is masked by this very simple, user-friendly device," says Blackberry executives. One possible outcome is that RIM and Good, a competitor will end up fighting over the lucrative corporate market, while the less-demanding consumer market becomes commoditised. But with hundreds of millions of e-mail users worldwide and, despite their apparent ubiquity, only 2.5m BlackBerry devices in circulation, it is still early days for the mobile e-mail business. No doubt, Blackberry is a technology marvel, the productivity improvements that Blackberry brings to work is probably immeasurable. Blackbery looks years ahead in technology - but still fact remains there are overwhelming limitations of the device - the device is cranky, the software malfunctions, the user interface is pathetic, the phone facilities are so poor - for example in my blackberry , I can't even send a businesscard from a Blackberry device - features are very limited and hot keys are not intuitive. But with all this can i live without Blackberry - having used to it - no way, but competition and improvements are highly called for - after all the allegiance is to the technology and not necessarily to the company.
RIMM is charging premium prices for a service that is no longer differentiated and in all its probability push e-mail shall become a commonplace application shortly. Despite the "blackberry thumb" taking a toll on a number of regular blackberry users. which affects a small number of users. With Nokia moving aggressively in this space,and with Microsoft adding mobile e-mail functionality should prove much easier than a new Blackberry server, i.e. it is an easier sell. And then there's the patent case against RIMM. Microsoft may indeed move to acquire RIMM despite a 12 plus billion marketcap. Not withstanding RIMM’s financial strength and market share, the competitive landscape will be quite different and we shall certainly see Nokia and Microsoft become significant players in the wireless e-mail market space.

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Sadagopan's Weblog on Emerging Technologies, Trends,Thoughts, Ideas & Cyberworld
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