Research in Motion co-CEO and president, Mike Lazaridis, did a Q&A session with Laptop Magazine’s Mark Spoonauer recently and had some interesting things to say on the future of the BlackBerry, 3G, Wi-Fi and more.
You can read the entire Q&A here, however, I would like to comment on the last question and answer.
Q: What can we expect to see from RIM for the rest of 2007? Are there CDMA versions of the Pearl and 8800 coming?
ML: One of the great things about the BlackBerry is that because it’s a Java environment, it really allows us to quickly port the BlackBerry experience to other devices and to bring along with that a very high level of fit and finish. We’re not having to re-debug the applications. That allows us to very quickly put out new products. We have a really great relationship with the CDMA carriers, and we’ve launched very successful products with them, so I wouldn’t be surprised if we have products coming in the future.
<RANT>As I think about it, ML’s answer here ticks me off.
If it is so simple for you to port applications over to a CDMA platform, why does it take you 9 to 12 months to do so? Verizon BlackBerry subscribers are some of the most addicted, loyal, fanatical BlackBerry users out there. If it is so easy for you to give us our fix, for goodness sake, why don’t you?
Most Verizon users don’t complain about the annoying “Can you hear me know commercials.” We generally don’t up and leave Verizon on those few occasions when we drop calls and our friends with brand new BlackBerry Pearls or 8800s ask “Where is your network now.” We simply pay 1/3 more than everyone else does for wireless and BlackBerry service and think that it must take a force of nature for you to port over to CDMA.
It is ticking me off to know that porting over to CDMA can be quickly accomplished because you don’t have to “re-debug” everything yet it still takes the better part of a year for me to get new gear after everyone else has it.
Verizon, I am ticked at you too. Do you view Verizon BlackBerry users as peons so loyal to your network that you can make us wait to get the new gear because you know we aren’t going anywhere. There is probably some truth to that, but the big boy up on Waterloo is making it obvious that a bit of pressure from you could possibly speed up the 9 to 12 month lag time.
CDMA isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. 3G with the Verizon type coverage is still 3 years away at least. If you want to standardize on GSM, fine. Just don’t tick CDMA users off by telling them how quick and easy it is to port over as you make us wait almost a year to get the new gear.</RANT>