Cool I can get my Iphone now branded as a BlackBerry.
This is so 201o.
What you see here is what I call “The VW Golf Effect”. Apple nailed the concept of the smartphone like
VW nailed the concept of the modern compact car. Both products hit the bullseye of the market and now
sit square in the middle of it. Both bringing a new design language to the market that broadens their appeal.
Thus the competitors feel forced to emulate the successful market champion instead of developing their
own strengths. While this might be reasonable concerning the product architecture (back bones) it doesn’t
help to copy the look aswell.
What RIM does here is what Chrysler Europe did with the Horizon. They had a strong contender in the market
before the Golf with the Simca 1200, which was strong on comfort, space and “durability” and already had the
hatchback in 1967. They didn’t follow it up with a developed variant of itself. Instead they built a small car, that just
looked like a Golf but had a softer ride and plusher seats. At the beginning they tried to sell it at a premium, but
over time had to sell it at a discount against the market leader.
The only thing VW had to do was to produce some holiday season specials with crushed velour seats
and a free radio…
The only thing Apple would have to do to crush RIM would be to built an “iOS-business” that allows for two
emulated machines to run on the same hardware. Won’t be worth their hassle.
Chrysler Europe even changed their name, too. The later cars were called “Talbot Horizon”, but it didn’t save
their bread, either. In 1985 they were gone.
What RIM should do is build a real “Black. Berry.”
The architecture and hardware could all stay the same, but for heavens sake wrap it into something cool, that
says “company director” more than a Porsche Convertible on a friday afternoon.
Look into high end materials for the hardware and reduce the look of the software to the max. Some BW Metropolis
theme with large icons, that company directors can decifer without their glasses would be great. Put that into an
artificial “Obsidian” with silver ridges, that looks like its done by Syd Mead AND Loewy.
But don’t just do another iClone.