|Blackberry case study|
| 3:43 pm on Jun 18, 2003 (gmt 0)|
I have several questions regarding a blackberry case study and am lost. Any thoughts would be appreciated:
What is the BlackBerry customer value proposition and who does this value proposition appeal to?
What are the assets RIM does not control but are necessary for BlackBerry's success? Should RIM attempt to gain control of these assets?
Should push BlackBerry wireless handhelds deeper into the consumer market, or continue to focus primarily on corporate clientele?
| 4:03 pm on Jun 18, 2003 (gmt 0)|
My firm deals in Nextel and AT&T Wireless, both of whom offer Blackberry phones.
That's not my field, but my take is that volume is low in these products and the main adopters are businesses who are using them for some kind of custom app or as part of their order infrastructure.
The devices still seem a little crude and unwieldy for every day consumer use. One of our people did an eval for a week or so, but checking e-mail was tedious. Instant Message ability was cool, but there was no compelling business reason to adopt this technology. The monochrome, low-res screen isn't too appealing, either. On the plus side, the unit was not heavy or bulky - a breeze to carry around, even if it is a bit wider than some devices.
Overall, I think the cell phone/PDA combo is the form factor business people will adopt. (I currently carry a Nextel and a CLIE, and would be delighted to combine the two.) I think it will look more like a PDA that you can talk into than a phone that does PDA stuff, since screen size and resolution will drive this, IMO. Postage-stamp size screens just aren't very good for serious use.
My guess is that Blackberry should focus on the early-adopter business markets, much in the way Nextel has done with its radio feature. Consumers seem to be more interested in color screens and camera features in their high-end phones.
| 4:04 pm on Jun 18, 2003 (gmt 0)|
We had a member here who I met at PubCon1. She was a friend of simon_c and a certified BlackBerry person as I recall.
| 4:36 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for the response, not sure I understand your last comment though. Do you think Blackberry (RIM) should go after the consumer market or stay at the corporate level?
| 4:49 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Westat, sorry I wasn't clear. In my opinion, they'd be better off pursuing business apps right now. One fairly significant issue is support - to integrate with Exchange Server, etc., took some heavy-duty systems work during our test. A business may have the IT support in-house to make this work. Until integrating the product with the user's systems is idiot-proof, I think the support costs would be too high to go after the individual consumer market. If they do go after consumers, they should probably specify an acceptable configuration, i.e., you may ONLY use AOL IM and Hotmail e-mail, no other configuration is supported.