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Apple's Jobs, RIM's Balsille in War of Words

By CIOinsight  |  Posted 10-20-2010 Print
Apple CEO Steve Jobs attacked BlackBerry maker Research In Motion about its tablet plans earlier this week. Now, RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie decides to fire back.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs attacked BlackBerry maker Research In Motion during his company's Oct. 18 earnings call. Now the Canadians feel compelled to strike back--with words, at least.

RIM and Apple combat on two fronts. In the enterprise, the BlackBerry franchise is attempting to hold its ground against fierce competition from both the Apple iPhone and Google Android, which have both made inroads among executives and workers. And RIM is preparing a 7-inch tablet, the PlayBook, which will face off against Apple's bestselling iPad.

"For those of us who live outside of Apple's distortion field, we know that 7-inch tablets will actually be a big portion of the market," Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of RIM, wrote in an Oct. 19 corporate blog posting, "and we know that Adobe Flash support actually matters to customers who want a real Web experience."

In a move seemingly tailor-made to raise blood pressures in Cupertino, Balsillie then launched head-on at Apple's refusal to support Flash. "While Apple's attempt to control the ecosystem and maintain a closed platform may be good for Apple," he wrote, "developers want more options and customers want to fully access the overwhelming majority of Websites that use Flash."

And then, unsatisfied with that broadside, Balsillie loaded his cannons with quarterly numbers. "And by the way, RIM has achieved record shipments for five consecutive quarters and recently shared guidance of 13.8 million - 14.4 million BlackBerry smartphones for the current quarter," he added. "Apple's preference to compare its September-ending quarter with RIM's August-ending quarter doesn't tell the whole story."

For more, read the eWeek article Apple's Jobs Refuted by RIM Co-CEO on Flash, Tablets.


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