There is a reason the iPhone, Android, Symbian S60, and Palm Pre all use WebKit as the basis for their web browser. It kicks the pants off the BlackBerry browser every time it is pitted against it. Opera and Skyfire are interesting alternatives but they do not integrate tightly with the OS and both are proprietary and are hard to develop specifically for them.
The crazy part is that RIM is already using another companies technology in their browser. Parts of their browser come from 4thpass which does not even exist anymore since it was bought out by Motorola. They also seem just fine with using Java which is another OpenSource standard/technology. So why not WebKit???
I think that RIM has quite a bit invested in the browser with backend optimization, security, & intranet access. On the other hand they are struggling so far behind the competition in this regard that they really need to shape up if they want to compete in the future. The web is slowly becoming an expected feature on smartphones and the pitiful updates that RIM has added in OS 5.0 are just not going to cut it! Maybe at least offer a alternative browser for browsing the web that can be integrated with the OS to do things as simple as open links? I just hate being embarrassed by how far behind RIM has fallen from the competition when it comes to web browsing. The only company it is still beating is Windows Mobile and that is just because Microsoft is stuck with IE.
So what do you think? Is the BlackBerry browser a lost cause? Or do you think it is salvageable?