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Blackberry, Nokia and Palm- the future

It is widely believed that Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry phones, will introduce another touchscreen phone before th end of the year.

Also, and more significantly, RIM should unveil a new operating system better suited for touch-screen products and partnerships with third-party app developers. With sales slipping, RIM is dangerously close to losing its grip on business customers — its bread-and-butter clientele — as the iPhone and Android products have proven to be attractive for road warriors.

Nokia’s problems are more complex. In the wake of Apple’s success, Nokia launched its own version of the App Store — called Ovi — and encouraged developers to create apps. But the approach hasn’t worked well, particularly in the U.S., in large part because there are no compelling Nokia smartphones to lure customers.

Nokia faces two significant problems.

First, it needs a cool product.

The phone maker once led with innovations like the N95, a fantastic media phone that was among the first to shoot high-quality video and take sharp pictures. But that was launched at about the same time as the original iPhone in 2007, and was Nokia’s last great phone.

promising successor, the N8, offers cool features like a 12-megapixel camera and HD-quality video recording, but the launch has been delayed from the spring and it could arrive in October. The N8’s problem: 

Vlad Savov wrote in a June Engadget preview that “Nokia has put together a growling multimedia powerhouse, but the OS is so far from being fully baked we can still see the dough.”

Thus, Nokia’s second problem: leadership. According to a Tuesday Wall Street Journal story, Nokia is searching for a new CEO because its sales and stock price continue to fall. Also, it is looking at scrapping the Symbian platform for smartphones and is instead developing a new platform with Intel Corp., called MeeGo, to run its smartphones.

And then there is Palm, a story that will be developing for some time. The Palm Pre and Palm Pre Plus are well-regarded products, yet consumers are not buying. But instead of going out of business — a very real possibility — Palm was purchased by HP for about $1 billion. That’s a pricey number, but it gives HP (HPQ) a potentially sexy product in a smartphone market it has had trouble with (who owns an iPaq?) and Palm a realistic shot at staying in the game.

Hopefully, the purchase will work out better for HP than Microsoft’s and Google’s recent forays into the smartphone space. Otherwise, expect more carnage in a market that, as it grows, eats its competition.

On my mind: Iftar

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Categories: gadgets, Phones Tags: ,
  1. August 28, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    As with all mobile phone products, The choice is enormous, from the traditional two piece Walkman type ear phones, to the popular Bluetooth connector. Daisy BlackBerry

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