Eight years ago, the about-to-be-former President of the United States, Barack Obama, was committed to hanging onto his BlackBerry after his swearing in. That’s how much he liked it. I’m not sure how that worked out.
Well before that, the expression “the BlackBerry prayer” had entered common usage, especially in business, as users (then, mostly executives) were seen hunched over their BlackBerry in meetings, thumbs going steadily.
The company, originally Research in Motion or RIM, was founded by two engineering students in 1984 (March 1984, Wiki says – what? at spring break?). Today, its patent portfolio is worth between $2 billion and $3 billion.
Its one-time dominance in the smartphone market has declined. Under new ownership, it has a new focus on software technology: mobile device management, which presumably means more than keeping the damned thing charged, which is my mobile device management challenge.
Recognized worldwide for its innovation, BlackBerry Limited is a treasure for playing against our national tendency to think of ourselves primarily as hewers of wood and drawers of water.