Blackberry CEO Predicts Tablets Will Be Obsolete In Five Years

from the i'd-bet-more-on-him-being-obsolete-by-then dept

When Microsoft was preparing its Surface tablet for the market, CEO Steve Ballmer famously -- and ridiculously --- claimed that people didn't really want iPads, but that they craved the Surface much more instead. While you have to respect a CEO believing strongly in his own company's product, there's also something to be said for CEOs who can be realistic. It seems that Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins is going the Ballmer route on tablets. In a move that appears to be an attempt to pre-defend the company's likely exit from the tablet market (which has not gone well for Blackberry), Heins argues not that Blackberry screwed up, but rather than the market for tablets is dying:
“In five years I don’t think there’ll be a reason to have a tablet anymore,” Heins said in an interview yesterday at the Milken Institute conference in Los Angeles. “Maybe a big screen in your workspace, but not a tablet as such. Tablets themselves are not a good business model.”
That's the sound of denial that you're hearing. It is actually okay for a CEO to admit that his company screwed up (especially when, as in this case, he can dump some of the blame on its strategy on the previous leadership). But to argue that the need for tablets is going away without a more detailed explanation? That just sounds like rationalizing.

To be clear, I could easily see a world in which a tablet does become obsolete, but it would likely be one where we see a rise of eye-displays like Google Glass or further advances beyond that -- and there's no indication that that is the direction that Heins is taking Blackberry. Instead, this just looks like him covering up for the failure of Blackberry to offer a compelling product by claiming that the whole space is going to go away.

Filed Under: ipad, tablet
Companies: blackberry

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 3 May 2013 @ 10:34am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Because it's not there yet.

    Even if tablet sales outnumber desktop sales, which they don't, it will take many many years for the amount of tablets in use to outnumber the amount of desktops in use. Factor in the amount of PCs still being bought (more than tablets), the many many years becomes many many more.

    There is a greater chance that the desktop will fully migrate to TV displays rather than to portable devices. It's "desktop" for a reason.

    Watch movie on a 42" display a few feet away or on a portable screen that you have to hold or perch somewhere.

    Putting all the processing powers into the display... good idea that's happening.
    Having all displays be small because portable... whats the point and purpose.

    Tablets, laptops and desktops fulfill a different role. Expecting a tablet to fulfill the role of a desktop without turning that tablet into a desktop is impossible with today's tech.
    You stated yourself that you have sorta turned your tablet into a desktop by adding a bluetooth keyboard. How soon before you plug it into a sized display that doesn't hurt your eyes ?

    The pc isn't dead or dying. It's evolving.

    wtf is a tablet after all ?

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Copying Is Not Theft
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.