Back in 2005, BlackBerry phones were taking off and I was a brand new college student wielding a cell phone that was so 2001. I was envious of my friends who could ‘BBM’ and check their emails anywhere, at any time. Flash forward to 2012, when my little brother is in college and half of his friends have never even seen, let alone used a BlackBerry – but haven’t met an Apple they didn’t like.
Although BlackBerry’s rise and steady decline has come in such a short period of time, it probably doesn’t come as a surprise to many. Apple’s successful iPhone just celebrated its ‘fifth birthday,’ and a staggering 217 million iPhones have been purchased during that time, with the number increasing daily. Along with the iPhone providing users with the most up-to-date technology, don’t forget about Google’s Android operating software, with the newest version scheduled to come out this summer to help with search and photo sharing.
BlackBerry has also been its own worst enemy as of late, with its new BlackBerry 10 operating system launch delayed again. After announcing that the new phone won’t be out now until early 2013 – well after the holiday shopping season – BlackBerry’s stock fell by 19% to close on June 29 at $7.39. According to the Associated Press, this is BlackBerry’s lowest stock price since September 2003. And if that news isn’t bad enough, CNN’s Doug Gross reported that BlackBerry’s maker, Canadian-based Research In Motion is laying off 5,000 after reporting a first-quarter loss of $518 million. Sales are also reportedly down 40% from the previous year.
While it may sound like all doom and gloom for the device formerly known as the ‘CrackBerry,’ many are still sticking with BlackBerry to keep them abreast of their emails and schedules. Gross said that BlackBerry still has 78 million users, plus $2.2 billion in cash available. But if the one-time popular phone does fade away permanently, don’t worry – iPhones and Androids are waiting with open arms.