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Blackberry Cellphones Handhelds

Black Sheep Blackberry Blackballed By Business 349

Hugh Pickens writes "Nicole Perlroth writes that the BlackBerry, once proudly carried by the high-powered and the elite, has become a magnet for mockery and derision from those with iPhones and the latest Android phones. as Research in Motion clings to less than 5 percent of the smartphone market — down from a dominating 50 percent just three years ago. One of the first steps Marissa Mayer took as Yahoo's newly appointed chief executive to remake the company's stodgy image was to trade in employees' BlackBerrys for iPhones and Androids and although BlackBerrys may still linger in Washington, Wall Street and the legal profession, in Silicon Valley they are as rare as a necktie. BlackBerry outcasts say that, increasingly, they suffer from shame and public humiliation as they watch their counterparts mingle on social networking apps that are not available to them, take higher-resolution photos, and effortlessly navigate streets — and the Internet — with better GPS and faster browsing."
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Black Sheep Blackberry Blackballed By Business

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  • So fucking what? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MagusSlurpy ( 592575 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:10AM (#41727251) Homepage

    Stupid people like to tease me for liking Star Trek and the Misfits. Fuck them, it's what *I* like that matters to me. If you switch phones because your old one isn't cool enough, you're a dipshit and deserved the mockery you were getting in the first place.

  • Grow a pair (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:11AM (#41727255)

    honestly, if you "suffer from shame and public humiliation" because of your phone, you need to grow a spine

  • by arcite ( 661011 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:14AM (#41727275)
    No kidding. A BB is a BUSINESS tool. If you want a no nonsense device with a physical keyboard and superior email and message handling, a BB is still the best.
  • by Chrisq ( 894406 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:16AM (#41727287)
    WTF is this world coming to if someone can be "shamed and humiliated" because of what type of phone they have?
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:16AM (#41727289) Journal

    Can we agree that anybody who experiences "public shame and humiliation" about their cell phone should be reassigned to some ghastly corner of nowhere where they can feel 'public shame and humiliation' over how many goats they own? And, of course, anybody inflicting public shame and humiliation over cellphones should be reassigned to be one of the goats in said ghastly corner of the world?

  • by FreakyGeeky ( 23009 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:17AM (#41727295)
    This thinking is exactly why RIM is in trouble. "But we do business email best! We'll always have a market!"
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:17AM (#41727301)


    Of all the things a person can be mocked for.. their choice in smart phone.. really!

    Either way, article missed the core reason. RIM created an identity as a "business" phone, which is inherently uncool. They were good at this. What they apparently didn't count on (and hindsight is always 20/20) was their business customers having "cool" phones for home use.. and seeing their blackberry as their "boring work phone". Only a matter of time before one says "why the hell can't I just use my iphone for work too" .. and here we are!

  • by jbolden ( 176878 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:20AM (#41727323) Homepage

    You should read the article. It was attacking the functionality of the BB as a business tool as well: mapping, not having all the messaging features, and client's having a low opinion of it. I don't think things are really that bad for BB but this is the NYTimes, so you can't just blow the article off.

  • by jbolden ( 176878 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:21AM (#41727333) Homepage

    Which incidentally is exactly why Microsoft is so worried about Android and iOS becoming the consumer standard for desktop / laptop. That is why their Win8 strategy makes sense, they don't want to be in RIM's position in 2022.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:23AM (#41727347) Journal

    WTF is this world coming to if someone can be "shamed and humiliated" because of what type of phone they have?

    The need to define a hierarchy based on shame and humiliation(and if that fails, good, wholesome, violence) appears to be older than humanity, if research on our adorable monkey colleagues is anything to go by). The precise means are historically contingent and practically irrelevant, so long as something is available.

  • Re:Grow a pair (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tuppe666 ( 904118 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:27AM (#41727377)

    honestly, if you "suffer from shame and public humiliation" because of your phone, you need to grow a spine

    A phone is not just a phone...It hasn't been for a long time. Apple would be out of business if that was true. Phones are Jewellery and have been for a long time. The other side of the coin is why shouldn't I have a nice phone, that I'm proud of and can show off. I worked for it!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:35AM (#41727449)

    just because it's the NYT doesn't make it informative,
    reliable or anything else. isn't this the same place that
    mocks correlation == causation?

  • by Tridus ( 79566 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:40AM (#41727483) Homepage

    Other phones are *better* business tools, if you're in a business that has more to it then just email and IM. There's quite a lot of business that falls into that category.

    We're looking at giving field staff phones when they do their ice jam monitoring during the winter/spring, because it lets them have maps of their routes, take photos of the jam, and submit it all from the field. We're not considering Blackberries for this task, because they're so far behind current phones that they're just not up to the task.

    Have a business where you can use apps to look at client data, market data, or any other kind of data? BB is a bad phone for it.

    Sorry folks, but "we do email best!" doesn't cut it anymore.

  • by datapharmer ( 1099455 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:41AM (#41727491) Homepage
    amen. We finally got our last user off blackberry this month and shut down the BES the next day. Good riddance to a piece of bloated crapware!
  • by Chrisq ( 894406 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:43AM (#41727511)

    Yeah kids never made fun of other kids because of their clothes or bike.

    If this were kids in the playground I'd agree. This is talking about representatives of major companies though!

  • by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @07:49AM (#41727557) Homepage

    But they dont. Android and iPhone utterly crush the BB in "business email".

    the BB is an exercise in frustration with email. android Jelly Bean's email client is a dream compared to the BB. Oh and it works great with our company exchange server, no nasty useless poorly written BB server in the back office that everyone hated to deal with.

  • by ledow ( 319597 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @08:02AM (#41727675) Homepage

    1) Except for that time that the entire European Blackberry base couldn't send or receive email for several days because it was all routed through one datacenter (even if you used a local Exchange connector, I believe) and there was a "data incident" that took WEEKS for them to catch up properly with normal email delivery for an entire continent? (Nothing to do with connectivity or the hardware itself, just the stupid idea of routing ALL email through a central server!)

    Because that's what killed my employer's use of Blackberry from that day onwards.

    2) The best tool for business is generally the best tool full stop. I'm not aware of many areas of technology where consumer/business versions aren't pretty much identical unless you're doing something quite serious - and that's a different matter. The majority of "business" is NOT huge corporations with thousands of employees.

    Mobile phones, for example, were always consumer items until BB turned up. They got used in business. They were so popular that people offered business packages. And now BB is dying because all consumer phones can do what the BB can do.

    Because that's what my employer did when the contract for the BB phones came up for renewal - they evaluated it, ditched it, went consumer, and never had any problems or missing features. They actually saved money at no loss.

    3) You think your employees aren't surfing anyway? Sure you can chain them to the desk and enforce a "no-mobiles" rule, and block everything online, but you won't make a happier or more productive staff by doing so.

    Whereas if you just open it up but say "on your head be it, and don't let it interfere with work", there's no expensive and resource-intensive management required, your staff will be happy that they can check that little Jimmy got to the doctors okay with his grazed knee without worrying, they'll be able to do what they want in lunch-hour anyway and you can STILL sack them if they don't do the work you require in a reasonable timeframe (which is the ONLY metric worth bothering with).

    Though I agree that work is a place for work, I'd die in a place that wouldn't let me show others a picture of my kid from Facebook while I'm chatting at lunchtime, or log in to check my delivery status on my Christmas order just before the end of the day to see if I can drive straight home or need to drive 20 miles out of my way to pick up a parcel before leaving or, hell, just do things like add things to my personal calendar or sort out family "emergencies" (like Jimmy's left his school shoes at home but only I know where they are).

    Sure, I can do that some other time. And I do. But I also do "work" stuff on my own time too and getting strict about that border actually works AGAINST my employers. Vastly.

    The company that treats its employees like the enemy is like the customer services department that treats its callers like the enemy. Costing you more to do less and making everyone miserable in the process.

  • by JDG1980 ( 2438906 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @08:10AM (#41727739)

    Which incidentally is exactly why Microsoft is so worried about Android and iOS becoming the consumer standard for desktop / laptop. That is why their Win8 strategy makes sense, they don't want to be in RIM's position in 2022.

    Bad analogy. RIM didn't have the advantage of massive legacy lock-in. The reason people use Windows isn't that it is better than Linux or OSX in some platonic sense; it's because Windows runs everything they have, and the other desktop OSes don't. The fact that just about everyone in the business world is trained on Windows (and usually not on Linux or OSX) also helps.

    Microsoft's position is a lot more secure than RIM's, and their Windows 8 strategy is actually a threat to that position because it alienates their core demographics.

  • by Reverand Dave ( 1959652 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @08:17AM (#41727779)
    Seconded, that's exactly what we did. Actually we shut that POS down right after I set up the exchange client for the last user. I think it was less than an hour after we got him switched over. BES was/is a nightmare.
  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna ( 970587 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @08:46AM (#41728009) Journal
    People using black berries are mocked and made fun of? Get over it buddy. It is nothing compared to the humiliation and derision invited by the lone college freshman using Dell in an ocean of Apple logos.
  • by briantf ( 116180 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @08:51AM (#41728053)

    Your explanation for setting up ActiveSync means the account you have is connected by an incompetent IT department.

    Setting up an Android or an iPhone for Exchange needs only an email address and a password. There are at least 3 different means by which Autodiscover can be configured to take care of client device configuration. If your IT dept can't figure that out, what makes you think a BES server is within their capacity to manage?

    Your shrill denunciation of SSL and the assumption that users are too stupid to use a password seems almost self-denigrating. You don't use SSL in any web app? You can't remember your corporate credentials? The iPhone might be too complicated for you.....

    Finally, we see the issue - you have a phone you don' t like, so it must be someone else's fault. The phone you did like was designed and built by a company so incompetent they self-destructed. It must be someone else's fault. I'm starting to see a pattern here....

    Brian in CA

  • by jythie ( 914043 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @09:54AM (#41728651)
    Meh, just look at slashdot or any other geek culture.. particular groups within it shame and humiliate people for failing to use what everyone else uses. You see it with iPhones and 'droids, OSX and Windows and Linux, Scotch and Wine and Beer,.. humans are social animals that like to push people for conformity around whatever the group uses to differentiate it from other groups. The symbols themselves are irrelevant and arbitrary.

    While one might be tempted to blame some specific group like 'hipsters', it is a pretty pervasive behavior that pretty much every subculture is guilty of.
  • Re:Grow a pair (Score:2, Insightful)

    by rahvin112 ( 446269 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @10:54AM (#41729339)

    If you are "proud" of a phone or for that matter anything you purchased then you are a dumb ass. Maybe when you get a little older you will realize that being proud of some physical object you purchased on the open market is a sign of douchebaggery. Real adults are "proud" of their children and accomplishments both personal (helping someone in need) and professional (achieving a difficult business goal), not some trinket.

  • by whoever57 ( 658626 ) on Monday October 22, 2012 @11:04AM (#41729493) Journal

    I use SSL, but I certainly dont trust if it the entitiy Im worried about is the government. SSL has gigantic flaws that are widely recognized; one is that the signing authorities tend to be incompetent, and one bad authority can completely wreck your day if someone wants to spy on you.

    As opposed to BlackBerry, where we know that some governments have access to at least some emails sent to/from blackberries. If we know that this capaiblity has been provided to the Indian government, do you really think that it hasn't been provided to the US government?

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