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TMCNet:  RIM is confident of making a strong comeback [Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)]

[January 30, 2013]

RIM is confident of making a strong comeback [Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)]

(Gulf News (United Arab Emirates) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Research in Motion (RIM) says it is very confident it will win back its customers.

"BB10 is the platform which is going to take us for the next decade," Robert Bose, regional managing director for Middle East and Africa, told Gulf News.

When asked whether this year will be a make or break year for RIM, Bose said that RIM is still the number one smartphone brand in certain markets like Johannesburg, Venezuela, Indonesia and has great success in Middle East, Africa and certain markets across the world.

"For the last two years we were reinventing the mobile computing platform and BlackBerry 10 is built for the next decade," he said, "It can be a game changer for RIM and it has to been how consumers adopt the devices. Even the best product needs marketing and RIM needs to spend a lot on marketing to promote the devices and regain market share," Annette Zimmermann, Principal Analyst, Consumer Markets and Technology at Gartner Deutschland GmbH, told Gulf News.

This year is a big year for RIM as it is "a make-or-break year for the Canada-based company".

"It has got lot of great features to win back corporate customers and what they need to do is win back consumers and that is more important. Consumerisation of IT and bring your own device is gaining momentum across the world, so winning back consumers is the key," she said.

RIM needs to do a lot of work to win back customers as many have left RIM and moved to iPhone and Android.

"RIM is on the watch list and if these devices fail in the market, then someone will acquire RIM but I cannot say when and by whom. It is too early to comment on Lenovo's bid. Lenovo is an aggressive player and is trying to penetrate new markets. We are keeping a watch," she said.

"This year we will see multiple attempts to fight the Samsung/Apple smartphone duopoly in smartphone hardware along with the twin Google/Apple duopoly in smartphone operating systems," said Ian Fogg, senior principal analyst at HIS iSuppli said in a statement.

"Because of the fast-rising adoption of smartphones, 2013 represents the last, best hope for RIM's BlackBerry 10 along with endangered specimens like Microsoft's Windows Phone, Nokia's Lumia and Mozilla's Firefox to create a viable third smartphone competitor in the market," Fogg said.

According to Malik Saadi, Principal Analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media, the significant drop in BlackBerry's average selling price (ASP) from $280 in 2010 to $200 in 2012 has helped RIM to maintain a decent rate of growth. If RIM is to target the same audience, the new device should not be priced higher than $250.

Z10 will be available in the UAE on February 10th. Pricing will vary by carrier partner, but unsubsidised it is expected to retail for Dh2,599.

The other model with Qwerty keyboard - Q10 - which has a 3.1-inch Amoled screen will be available in the second quarter of this year. Pricing will be available closer to the date. Both the phones have 1.5GHz dual core processors and 16GB of internal storage.

So, given the very fast growing smartphone market, Saadi said RIM should aim to sell at least one million units of the new device in the first quarter after its launch. Anything below this would call into question the company's ability to execute its marketing strategy while anything above "3 million units would be a spectacular performance, which will undoubtedly resurrect both the consumers' and the investors' confidence in the BlackBerry brand," Saadi said in a statement.

(c) 2013 Al Nisr Publishing LLC . All rights reserved. Provided by an company

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