RIM and Thorsten Heins have made it clear multiple times in the past that they are considering licensing BlackBerry 10. Today the news seems to have made a resurgence thanks to an interview with Thorsten Heins with the Telegraph. When I read that section of the interview I did not think twice about it but since it is news today I thought it would be worth sharing a few tiny details that Thorsten added. We now also know that RIM is still strategically considering licensing.
Here is what Thorsten told The Telegraph:
Indeed, RIM will launch BB10 with two devices that are crucial to its survival and only one will have a keyboard. The more expensive device will be a touchscreen. Heins is keenly aware that he must get cheaper devices into the mainstream. “We don’t have the economy of scale to compete against the guys who crank out 60 handsets a year. We have to differentiate and have a focused platform. To deliver BB10 we may need to look at licensing it to someone who can do this at a way better cost proposition than I can do it. There’s different options we could do that we’re currently investigating.”
That raises the prospect of a BlackBerry phone that is made by, say, Samsung or Sony. “You could think about us building a reference system, and then basically licensing that reference design, have others build the hardware around it – either it’s a BlackBerry or it’s something else being built on the BlackBerry platform. We’re investigating this and it’s way too early to get into any details. We have to also model this from a finance perspective – that’s why we’re working with the financial advisers to see if we do this where would it take the company. Either we do it ourselves or we do it with a partner. But we will not abandon the subscriber base.”