Blackberry 'Boys' - Is it Working ?

Posted in Marketing & Strategy Articles, Total Reads: 3276 , Published on 29 May 2011
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Blackberry, when it started targeted the niche market of business professionals. With an eventual saturation of market and with other brands coming up with similar products, BlackBerry decided to reposition itself as a smartphone for everybody. But did the Blackberry repositioning work ? 


Blackberry Boys

Brief on Smartphone market : The worldwide smartphone market grew 79.7% year over year in the first quarter of 2011 (1Q11), driven by a combination of vendors releasing highly anticipated models, widespread availability of older smartphones at lower prices, and sustained end-user demand.

According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, smartphone vendors shipped a total of 99.6 million units in 1Q11. 

Source : IDC 5th May 2011

So whats up with this Blackberry: Almost 5.1% fall in the market share of RIM. The reasons may be numerous. Apple’s iPhone 4, HTCs Desires and Wildfires, Android rampage by Google etc. 

In Simple terms who are the target customers for smartphones –


  • Corporate Employees – hardly any growth in this segment.
  • Younger GenX crowd – explosive growth, as this segment wants to migrate from normal candy bar mobiles to smartphones for new features like social networking , thousands of apps ,utilities, convenience etc…


So may be for this reason, Blackberry in association with Vodafone launched the advt. campaign last year –‘we are the blackberry boys’, aiming to remove the Blackberry’s CXO phone image, especially for the prepaid customers. The idea started from BlackBerry itself. They wanted their services to become more mainstream as they realized a lot of young people are using the services to chat on the BlackBerry messenger and surf social networking sites on the internet and this is the first TV commercial by BlackBerry is the recent and most wonderful "We are the BlackBerry Boys...!!" the jingle can easily sits in anyone's mind and leaving the viewer to hum the jingle quite comfortably and often.

But its just not about the campaign, but more.

Blackberry Tarrif Plans

Tariffs of All other Mobile Phone Internet Plans  such as on Nokia, Samsung , HTC, Motorola : Starts @ as low as Rs 98 / months – 2 GB    OR   1ps / KB

If you see the prices above in RED, do you feel the so called ‘blackberry boys’ are ready for the following:  


  • When you pay 300-400 bucks and stil you don’t have access to browsing , social networking etc.
  • Even all the so called blackberry apps work only if you have the  599 Data plan ONLY . Blackberry LOCKS all the apps unless you have a BIG data plan.
  • Blackberry  says you can ‘enjoy’ the unlimited access to  10 Mails. Excuse me!  Name another mail service we use in India apart from Yahoo, Gmail , to some extent Rediff.  Ppl hardly use more than 2 mail accounts , so forget about 10.
  • Blackberry also says, you can do unlimited instant messaging not only across Gtalk,yahoo msngr, but also Blackberry messenger(messenger whereall  Blackberry users  only can chat) . Oh , so howz this different from Gtalk, when you have all the friends already patched up either on Gtalk or Ymsgnr.
  • And moreover so called ‘blackberry boys’ already spend about 500 Rs / months on regular internet connection at their homes and may be use this mobile internet as a supplement on the Move. 


On the final note ,  Not just the blackberry pieces cost a Bomb for the features they offer, but also the regular maintenance / monthly bills.  So based on these prices &  practices it is going to be really tough soon with the Apple’s Iphone 4, Google Nexuses , Samsung’s Galaxies all bombarding the Smarthphone market !!!

About the Author: Varun Jilla,  MBA (NMIMS, Mumbai), is a Consultant with a leading IT firm. Views are personal. He can be reached on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . He blogs on http://www.flypside.tumblr.com/ 




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