I’m open to RIM becoming the next Apple. All we need is a company with superior technology and superior management that has been hampered by lack of a strong brand and sales strategy (not to mention certain legal agreements barring them from competing with RIM in its core markets).
Then we have them do a reverse-takeover, booting nearly all of RIM’s management.
Have I forgotten anything? Oh yes, then we need a hit product (like the original Jellybean iMac) that will buy them time to create entirely new markets rather than trying to compete in a business where they have already lost.
Put all that together, and you could have RIM being successful in automotive displays, or televisions, or making movies, or something provided it isn’t telephones.
> What happened at Apple was—for all intents and
> purposes—a reverse takeover. In theory, they bought
> NeXT. In practice, NeXT’s management took over
> managing Apple and its OS became Apple’s OS.
We had built this really nice entry-level mail reader in Netscape 2.0, and it was a smashing success. Our punishment for that success was that management saw this general-purpose mail reader and said, "since this mail reader is popular with normal people, we must now pimp it out to 'The Enterprise', call it Groupware, and try to compete with Lotus Notes!"
To do this, they bought a company called Collabra who had tried (and, mostly, failed) to do something similar to what we had accomplished. They bought this company and spliced 4 layers of management in above us. Somehow, Collabra managed to completely take control of Netscape: it was like Netscape had gotten acquired instead of the other way around.
There also had an army of loyal supporters. Supporters longing for their return to greatness. That and they had, in ways, carved out a safe harbor, they didn't have to compete head to head with MS or the clone makers. We're talking about a rare turn around though, that doesn't happen often. Comparing companies to Apple is going to be the new Godwin's law..
RIM is just in a different spot, the game changed and they didn't. They had some good stuff but the rules are just so different, if they made a product that was on par with Android of iPhone, that's simply not enough.