Research in Motion, the maker of the Blackberry cellular phones had been saying things are bad but they didn’t say things were this bad! RIM just announced that on top of their planned layoffs of 2,000 jobs they will adding an additional 5,000 jobs to the total for a cut of 7,000. Also its much anticipated launch of the BB10 operating system, some would say its last attempt at relevance, has been pushed back until next year.
Tech site Gizmodo is reporting on this unmitigated disaster.
It is common for companies to have bad quarters (RIM lost $200 million dollars last quarter). What everyone is looking towards the company to do during these times is to have a clear way out of the mess. Everyone has been looking forward to BB10 to hit the streets. Most think it looks promising, some say it may be revolutionary. For a company like RIM who seems to be holding on by a thread a delay until 2013 may prove to be a nail in the coffin.
The numbers look terrible for RIM no matter which way you look at it. 7,000 jobs lost, revenue down 33%, Blackberry Playbook shipments of 260,000 and an appstore with only 89,000 apps in it, which is less than for any other system.
In order to get excited about anything in their latest report, one has to look at number of handsets sold this quarter, 7.8 million for a ray of light. Then you see Apple sold 35 million iPhones during the same time. Then you look even further and see a vast majority of the units were low end units in developing countries and you realize there may just be no hope for RIM.
Now it seems like there are only two options left. Either RIM walks off a ledge and kills itself or puts itself on the market for a strategic partner to help rebound the company. Either way it is the end of an era.