At least one of these OEMs has the guts to admit they were considering to use Android going forward. RIM’s CEO Thorsten Heins mentioned the company was looking at the open source operating system to determine their plans to move forward, but ultimately decided to go with what is now known as Blackberry 10.
RIM was no doubt challenged to modernize themselves after seeing the likes of the iPhone and Android race on by. The challenge came with differentiation: did Android give them enough room to keep them from being a “me too” company?After all, RIM is one of few OEMs which make both hardware and the software which runs on it.
Nokia’s move with Microsoft wasn’t quite as surprising considering they held no loyalty to a homegrown operating system. It was important for RIM to develop their own option, though it obviously hasn’t come without its pitfalls.
One major problem has simply been the unpredictable and unforgiving software development cycle. Blackberry 10 was expected to launch this year, but unsightly delays have pushed that back to early 2013. Many think it will be too late for RIM to offer a compelling smartphone experience by then as Android and iOS get better each and every day (let alone Windows Phone).
And who’s to say RIM couldn’t properly distance themselves from what’s considered “the norm” with Android? Amazon did it with the Kindle Fire, and we’ve seen Meizu transform Android into a beautiful beast the likes we haven’t yet seen.
Even MIUI, an after-market ROM, could fool one into thinking it’s not based on Android. But the decision was made, and RIM is dead set on making Blackberry 10 work. The only other question is whether or not the users are willing to wait while competition is steadily passing them by. [Telegraph]