Feeds

BlackBerry binned JV plan to become China's official mobile OS: report

Managers pondered deal for two years without reaching a decision

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Struggling BlackBerry launched a bold bid back in 2010 to corner the Chinese smartphone market through a joint venture, but despite significant interest from Beijing internal feuding in the company ended up scuppering a deal, it is claimed.

In summer 2010, Research In Motion chairwoman Barbara Stymiest and then co-CEO Jim Balsillie took their plan to the state-run China Investment Corp (CIC), according to a report in Canada’s Globe and Mail referencing “people familiar with the discussions”.

A new firm – formed by RIM, CIC and other unnamed domestic handset players – would have sold new handsets licensed to run on RIM’s “core software”, the report claimed.

The deal would apparently have rubber stamped RIM as the official supplier of smartphone operating systems in the world’s biggest market for devices, but despite Balsillie’s enthusiasm and strong interest from Beijing, nothing came of it.

Co-CEO Mike Laziridis and other directors were apparently concerned that a possible China deal would distract the firm from the launch of its BlackBerry 10 device.

The plan is said to have been discussed internally at RIM for two years before it was finally binned after new CEO Thorsten Heins took the reins.

Ironically the launch of the firm’s iPhone-killer, the BlackBerry 10, is now widely regarded as one of the most disastrous in smartphone history.

BlackBerry's second quarter earnings a fortnight ago put expected quarterly revenues at $1.6bn, less than half the $3.06bn analysts were expecting thanks in part to the poorly performing handset.

The firm has now agreed to be taken private by a consortium led by Toronto-based Fairfax Financial Holdings in a deal worth around $4.7bn – a huge drop from the $70bn+ it was once valued at.

Meanwhile, in China domestic handset makers vie with Apple and Samsung for a larger slice of a smartphone market dominated by Google Android. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Don't wait for that big iPad, order a NEXUS 9 instead, industry little bird says
Google said to debut next big slab, Android L ahead of Apple event
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
A drone of one's own: Reg buyers' guide for UAV fanciers
Hardware: Check. Software: Huh? Licence: Licence...?
Jaguar Sportbrake: The chicken tikka masala of van-sized posh cars
Indian-owned Jag's latest offering curries favour with us
The Apple launch AS IT HAPPENED: Totally SERIOUS coverage, not for haters
Fandroids, Windows Phone fringe-oids – you wouldn't understand
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
Here's your chance to buy an ancient, working APPLE ONE
Warning: Likely to cost a lot even for a Mac
Xiaomi boss snaps back at Jony Ive's iPhone rival 'theft' swipe
I'll have a handset delivered. Judge us after you try us...
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.