BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion needs to remake itself, pumping new blood into aging corporate thinking by spinning-off its handset and network divisions, one analyst reasons.
“RIM’s end-to-end solution was conceived when data devices and networks were nascent — but times have changed,” RBC Capital analyst Mike Abramsky told investors Tuesday. The Waterloo, Ontario-based company “like its handsets, needs modernization.”
The split-up would let RIM support Android and Windows phones and tablets, along with current BlackBerry owners, a market that is six-times larger than now with around 400 million handsets, Abramsky posits. The handset market “has shifted from hardware to software, from network needs to consumer experience,” the analyst writes.
What about QNX, RIM’s planned successor to the BlackBerry OS, expected to appear sometime in 2012? “Although QNX appears strong, if QNX doesn’t work, or further mis-execution undermines RIM’s turnaround, then RIM will be left without a ‘plan B,’ he adds.
Splitting RIM into two segments “may accelerate organizational change and help reinvigorate RIM’s culture and promote new blood,” Abramsky reasons, noting how the iPhone was launched in 2007, but QNX won’t appear until 2012.
Before the idea is dismissed, such a spin-off revival tactic has been done before. Motorola, which was the hot handset maker with its RAZR back in 2006, fell into a slump with a number of forgettable devices. The company which went on to spin-off its handset and networking divisions, is now known for the popular Droid.