Research in Motion has not been faring too well in 2012. This is definitely not their best year and it seems like this ship is sinking fast. Although there have been rumours that tie-ups were a possibility none of RIM’s partners, or other companies have made anything official or too public. Clearly RIM is in need of a life preserver even though their state in the Indian market and other Asian sectors seems to be quite well off.

However in their current state of affairs with stocks and shares falling drastically, the notion of partnering up with other OS developers and manufacturers seems like a good option. A recent Reuters report even seemed to suggest that Microsoft showed some interest in RIM’s patents, while others seemed to think that the software giant was interested in yet another partnership with another ‘failing’ mobile developer. Neither company has anything to say about that formally or off the record.

Rough times

Rough times

There was also a rumour making its way through the tech grapevine that search giant Google also showed interest in the Canadian company. That too was not verified officially… until now. A statement that’s being going around, issued by Research in Motion indicates that it was quite likely that the BlackBerry handset maker was possibly approached by Google to join the ranks of the Android community. This is what made it out –

We came to the decision that joining the family of the Android players, for example, would not fit RIM’s strategy and its customers. We are not trying to be one of many. We’re trying to be different. We’re trying to be the best solution for our customers that buy a BlackBerry, know why they want a BlackBerry. And we’re aiming for nothing less than being a viable, successful, mobile computing platform of the future.

This is what we’re aiming at. And I think that’s the difference. If you compare us with others, did we take the hard rod? Absolutely. Absolutely. But having done this and building and completing this new mobile computing platform that then expresses itself as a smartphone or as a tablet or as a vertical application or embedded in cars, whatever you want to do, that is where we will take BlackBerry.

And this is – that’s why it was absolutely required and necessary to build its own platform. I would argue the other way around. If I continue to rely on somebody else’s OS and somebody else’s platform, would that allow me in the long run to really differentiate towards my customers and provide them the services and the environment that they request from me and that they would like to have? I have a big question mark around this. So I think going this way and building the platform we are building has the absolute intent to serve our customers and our markets better than on a standard-based OS and platform.

Even with the delay of their upcoming BlackBerry OS 10 (moved to next year) the company seems to be thinking positive, falling stock and high level executives leaving notwithstanding. They seem determined to go the road alone and that is commendable. As of now, RIM is sticking with BlackBerry OS. A tie-up with Android or WP will have to wait.

What remains to be seen is if they can truly survive 2013 without more delay in announcements and walk outs. They have the support of the Indian BBM community, that’s for sure, but on the other side of the pond, reports seem to indicate that they need all the help they can get. It’s going to be a rough road and but perhaps there is light at the end of BlackBerry’s dark tunnel.

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