When it comes to U.S. based mobile web traffic there are really only two players in the game. The iPhone sits atop the hill with over 40% total share and Adroid is right on the iPhone’s heels just a few percentage points behind. The other dogs in the race, Palm and Microsoft, simply don’t hunt and what’s really telling is that the BlackBerry, even though it’s the number one smartphone in America, has seen a ridiculous decline since October, 2008 when it was just a few points behind the iPhone.
Web browsing on the BlackBerry is an embarrassment!
I am not sure which is the worst embarrassment… How bad web browsing on the BlackBerry is compared to pretty much everything else, or, how long it is taking RIM to do something about it. I know that RIM will soon release the new and improved WebKit based BlackBerry Browser, but, RIM, quite honestly, should have released a BlackBerry Browser with legs when the original BlackBerry Storm came out. Most definitely by the time that the Storm2 came out.
What will RIM do?
I love the BlackBerry, but, I think that RIM is running out of time. There is just too much cool stuff that you can do on these other devices that you can’t even think about doing on a BlackBerry. There is a new iPhone coming out this summer. Windows Mobile 7 is coming this fall. Android keeps getting updates regularly and someone is going to eventually buy Palm, if for nothing more than the intellectual property. (webOS is strong) I think that we have a good idea of what everyone else is doing. The big question for me is what will RIM do?
[Via ARS Technica]
I’m worried that RIM might be another Palm.
RIM is not Palm, Palm never had the backend and infrastructure RIM does. RIM could get out of the handheld game and just run their backend and make money. Data packet compression is going to matter when a growing number of people are using smartphones for all types of things. Who else controls data from and to the device compressed not to mention encrypted?
I agree about the browser, I think a huge shift has been the consumer adoption of smartphones. The internet (mobile usage) is still young. A large percent of people still mostly care about SMS, email and PIM management. Now I’m not saying mobile internet won’t be just as large as the PC side but it’s still a work in progress and devices are just coming along to fully tap into it. If RIM’s torch webkit browser equals iPhone then it will be an interesting play. I think they need to one up and launch with Flash support so show iPhone as the lesser device.
I just don’t see RIM going full consumer focused and losing sight of their enterprise strong hold. It’s a major market to own and no one is close to the adoption rate. Consider BES is now free they have some options left, if anything you will see a seperation of enterprise focused / prosumer focused. Can RIM be both? They certainly need to respond quicker in the prosumer realm to keep up with Android / iPhone OS.
Enterprise users think the lackberry sucks too. We are piloting software that allows us to remotely wipe iPhones. If all things go well we can get rid of these god forsaken pieces of crap from RIM by the end of June.
Is this guy still trollin’ these RIM posts?
“RIM could get out of the handheld game and just run their backend and make money.”
Well, except for the fact the 85+% of RIM’s profits are from hardware. So, no they couldn’t, at least not as a publicly traded company that must answer to stock holders.
But we are now seeing the effects of RIM screwing the pooch on their browser. They’ve known it sucked for a couple years and sat with their thumb up their butt while the smartphone world passed them by. The Torch acquisition may have been too little too late.
RiM needs to buy Palm and merge BBOS into webOS.
Two years ago most of the country (US) wasn’t even on a 3G network so they are not out of time. Mobile Web will take off as LTE rolls out which is still 1 – 2 years away.
People get way too caught up in having things here and now. Considering Apple is just releasing a background process capable device 3 years after iPhone shows that the market is much larger then the tech people who read blogs about this technology.
Palm would be an interesting play but how long would it take for them to rework WebOS to intergrate with BES? Maybe they need a line that is not capable of running on BES and strickely consumer focused. Like Microsoft they have a large enterperise side that they need to factor into everything which unfortunately slows down changes.
Good luck with that. I’ve tested every other platform for iPhone (and other devices) and they are woefully lacking in the security / management aspect and have zero means to deploy internally created applications.
If all you need is remote wipe just use ActiveSync in Exchange.
Does android/iPhone do web content compression? Does this affect the study? Where is this study anyway?
Beyond these questions, i know for a fact as a our company’s mobile device admin that many blackberry users don’t use their blackberry for web browsing. It’s an email device, nothing more. Not because it’s lacking, but because they don’t like it, regardless of the device.
All of the “Hot” new phones coming in the next 9 months are all TouchScreen! Where is RIM? Working on their 3rd try. It’s too late, short sell RIM
Good post Robb… DavidB makes a very good point about RIM buying Palm and merging webOS with the BlackBerry OS. It is something RIM should seriously consider.
A problem for Palm forever has been their inability to make good hardware. I think both the Pre and the Pixi suffer from this. The devices feel cheap and are just too small for anyone but those with small hands to use comfortable.
Give me the new BlackBerry slider, but instead of the BlackBerry OS, run webOS along with the BB OS as an application in a virtual machine.
So does everyone agree that the best Smartphone operating system at the moment is the webOs?
A lot of people seem to think so. Norman R. is spot on about Palm’s hardware though.
Well if thats the case Robb. why on earth will Palm put itself on the market to be bought out. All they need is a better hardware. Has everyone forgotten they ruled at one point until selling out to microsoft’s OS and lost 90% of its customers to RIM, especially the corporate world.
I use a blackberry and will continue to do so. I own an itouch. it is a great multimedia experience device to have. However thats all it is. Apple are very smart. Their intention isnt to overtake RIM, it is to complement every device and software they have on the market. their revenue comes from all the macs and itunes. if you use any of those you are more inclined to buy an itouch and even an ipad. Noone is going to take them down. it is here to stay.
Android devices are good but they dont have all the extra things to get kids and young people all excited about having one. (not yet anyway.)
By the way RIM couldnt care less about web browsing. it makes a device vunerable to attack, thats why it wasnt number one on their to do list. Surveys show most people dont browse on their phones. Thats the whole point of RSS readers and applications that gives us the info we require.
Hopefully that puts a rest to some of the silly questions that comes up.
“Surveys show most people dont browse on their phones.”
What a ridiculous statement to make on a blog site dedicated to smartphones. Perhaps people don’t “browse on their phones” from a dumbphone or featurephone, but there’s NOBODY that has a smartphone and doesn’t browse the web.
relax there big guy. ‘NOBODY’? really. just goes to show how silly people can be.
I agree DavidB, I associate with many smartphone users and they (for the most part) avoid browsing the web on a phone, at best it is a bad experience, the 3G S has a fair browser and trying to effectivly use it as a web browser simply sucks, even worse on my Bold, I have a laptop in my car and a Desktop at Home, Ill wait and use one of them.
I think that RIM “caring less” about web browsing is part of the problem.
What will RIM do? Very little, just like always. RIM’s CEO Laztarded, thinks his product is superior and sees very little to change. Mobile web is the future of the mobile device. RIM is positioning itself out of the game. By the time RIM finally comes out with its new browser, it will be too little, too late.
You do realize RIM is likely going to announce (maybe release) the Webkit browser at WES in less then 30 days? I’d be shocked if they miss at a minimum setting a date for it.
Ever try browsing the web on a tiny screen? You need a full panel touch screen to do that and right now RIM has only one poor excuse for one.
The iPhone screen is not much larger? The BB resoluton on Bold 2 is actually higher so what’s the point? Personally I hate touch screens and a large amount of people feel the same. Funny on my iPhone I frequently have to pinch, zoom, swipe .. so your point is?
If internet access is that critical get a laptop, netbook etc.
Whoever believes mobile web is “not that big a deal” is fooling themselves. People want INSTANT access. If that means squinting at a tiny screen versus waiting for a full blown computer to power up and recognize an availible network…they will GLADLY opt for the former.
It seriously behooves RIM to stop fronting like access to the web (and apps for that matter, but that’s another blog post) is not a huge mobile market to tap into, and start investing some serious thought + action into getting on board.
Hopefully this new webkit coming out is a good step in the right direction.
“People want INSTANT access.” I would be interested in your source for that tidbit of information, maybe some people want instant access but I would beleive the majority dont worry about access being “instant”,