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Tablets will be stone dead in five years

by on01 May 2013

Blackberry CEO turns Mystic Meg

The CEO of a mobile phone maker which had to change its tarnished name before releasing its latest smartphone late, has warned that tablets will be dead in five years. (He still thinks Blackberry will be around in five years? Ed)

BlackBerry’s CEO Thorsten Heins, who once suffered from having the top RIM job, believes that there will be no reason to own a tablet soon. According to the Verge when Talking at the Milken Institute conference Heins said that you might need a big screen in at work, but not a tablet. Heins said that tablets were a pants business model in the first place and while the likes of Apple, Google, Amazon and Samsung have built significant tablet businesses over the past few years this does not mean that the industry will last.

In fact BlackBerry's PlayBook tablet was one of its most notable failures, quickly dropping in price after unsold inventory caused it to take a $485 million loss in late 2011. Heins has been consistant and slowly backed away from tablets as if they were a rabid dog. By early 2013, he said that the company’s future depended on how well BlackBerry did with its new platform on phones and tablets could take a running jump. He is now suggesting that not only is BlackBerry likely staying out, but the the market itself is dying.

So why would Heins offer such a pessimistic prediction when everyone else—from the research firms to the tablet-makers themselves—seems so full-speed-ahead? It’s easy to forget sometimes that BlackBerry has its own tablet in the mix: the PlayBook, which was released to quite a bit of fanfare in early 2011 but failed to get many sales. The Tame Apple Press suggest that it is sour grapes because Heins could not get his Playbook to sell well and wants to pull Blackberry out of that game. However what he is saying does make sense.

Heins believes that users do not want tablets but want to do more on probably slightly bigger smartphones. He has been saying this for a while now. He has been talking about making BlackBerry phones a central computing hub that could replace dedicated laptops or tablets so that users only carry one device. Then you will carry peripherals around it that make your life much more easy than it is today carrying a tablet, carrying a smartphone, carrying a laptop, going to your office and having a desktop.

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