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RIM Rallying the Troops at Waterloo Employee Dev Conference

thorsten_heins david_yach

One of our tipsters sent us some notes from the keynote at RIM’s RDX employee only developer expo in Waterloo that started yesterday. According to our source RIM’s COO of product engineering, Thorsten Heins, gave the keynote yesterday with the CTO of software, David Yach, set to keynote about OS 6.1 today. The general consensus was that Thorsten really offered a frank and candid view to attendees. Its good to see that RIM’s executive management is seeing a clear picture of what needs to change. Here are some highlights:

  • RIM has a history of running late on commitments and that needs to change
  • The release of OS 6.0 ran late and that “cost” RIM
  • It looks like OS 6.1 is already falling behind schedule a bit and that is “not acceptable”
  • He doesn’t want to be late on OS release and updates anymore – Embarrassed with OS 6.0 delays
  • Lots of divergent teams working on similar projects – need focus and consolidation
  • Trying to make teams more effective without bureaucracy

All in all I am glad to see that Thorsten Heins is kicking the troops in gear for a solid OS 6.1 launch. RIM needs to get the execution down right for this release since they really need this one to be a winner out the door. Truthfully if they just sexy-fied BlackBerry 6 with awesome visuals along with the faster processors they will probably have a winner on their hands.

6 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. Finally someone is looking ahead an seeing the major impact of complacency.

  2. Great to see there is some self reflection at the top of RIM. Knowledge of self is important. Its something that can clearly become a problem. Look at Nokia!

  3. Good to hear, let’s hope they can back this up with action.

    I know this doesn’t report the whole event but it would be nice to also have RIM will hiring more people or paying for and expecting overtime, that is putting money where you mouth is.

    Certainly agree that delays on 6.1 are not acceptable. We see the same with no native email on Playbook. Personally I don’t need it, but it gives critics something to yap about and that is going to cost some sales.

  4. To be honest, I find this a bit disturbing.

    They should be looking for a root cause: development is consistently delivering behind schedule. Do they have proper resource allocation to Development? Are competent project managers in place? Who is setting the deadlines – and does development get a chance to properly estimate the efforts?Are requirements stable and consistent? Is there allowance for re-estimating as requirements are solidified? Did, perhaps, some overly talkative CEO start handing out timelines to the media without first verifying that the goals were achievable?

    I know we’re only seeing part of the picture here; but if you have a competent development team chances are they don’t need to be flogged to make a deadline unless there’s a reason they *can’t* make the deadline. Just a few of those reasons were listed above.

    No – to me this sounds like a knee-jerk response from a COO in response to being reprimanded from higher up the food chain.

  5. When is the last time RIM released something on or ahead of schedule that was not buggy?

  6. Can someone take a shot at telling us why this is going to be OS6.1 instead of 7, and relabel 7 to 8? Are they afraid of running out of numbers?

    To me it shows they don’t have marketing down. It will be a lot easier to convince people this is a whole new user experience if it’s called 7, 6.1 sounds derivative.

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