Although Thursday's earnings calls definitely left many BlackBerry enthusiasts with a sour taste in their mouth, we did learn a few things about why the new BlackBerry devices are being delayed.
From the earnings calls:
Even though this makes a lot of sense and answers some questions (like the fact that rumors of the Magnum and Dakota have been around for a couple of years now), it also raises a couple other ones. Like for example, what took so long for them to realize "that in the US the features and performance arms race demanded... a higher-performance platform?" Since 2009, Android's platform has been getting exponentially better. And as much as I hate to say it, even earlier, iOS has been at least trying to make these innovations and moving forward.We were already well down a development path to the next-generation BlackBerry handsets when we realized that in the US the features and performance arms race demanded that we upgrade the chipset and port BlackBerry to a higher-performance platform. This was an engineering change that affected hardware and software timelines and pushed out entry into carrier certification labs.
The heads at RIM need to be on the same page when it comes to what direction the company's going. Recently, it feels to the average consumer that a certain part of upper echelon wants to move forward and take a few risks while another side is more conservative and focus more on what RIM has done in the past and keep milking that cow as long as possible instead of pushing the envelope forward.
This last statement is trying to reserve that thought process and convey that RIM is conscience of how far behind they've fallen and that is the first step of any type of recovery: admitting there's a problem.
That being said, adapting new phones to a new OS and a new chipset (the Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset) is not an easy task. It does present a few time consuming problems which include, but aren't limited to, the actual radio coding, approval from the carriers, and the fact that RIM is adapting a new OS to the GPU feature of the new chipset which will include the "liquid graphics" side of it all.
According to Mike Lazaridis, the radio code used in this new chipset is some of the best code they've ever written which definitely gives us hope. Since RIM has control over it we should see an improvement in battery life at least (as battery drainage is mostly done by the phone's radio signal).
Without going into all the technical aspects of it, once the coding is done, integrated, and tested by RIM, it is then sent to each individual carrier to approve and once it does the phone gets released. Carriers thought can take their sweet time approving these devices and unfortunately RIM can't push them to hurry because they don't have much leverage pining carriers against carriers due to their lack of popularity in the current market.
So that's the thought process and reasoning behind the delay. We all hear RIM is trying and that they're doing the best they possibly can.
But what do you think, is it too little, too late?