We are out at CTIA in Las Vegas and much of the buzz before the first keynote session was focused on what RIM Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis’ keynote would highlight this morning. Obviously, most folks knew that BlackBerry App World was launching but not necessarily where he would lead the conversation. Once again, for me, it was that BlackBerry is your media outlet and your platform to participate.
Mr. Lazaridis started the conversation by reminding us that it was the 10 year anniversary of BlackBerry in coming to America. Since its debut a decade ago, RIM has come along way attaining the status of #1 smartphone in the States (in terms of market penetration). If the presentation was any indication, they have no intent of losing that position and their popularity with consumers.
U2 360 TOUR
Bono and the Edge also chimed in (via video) with a little love for BlackBerry after some of the opening remarks. For diners that were not aware, BlackBerry is sponsoring the new U2 360 tour and Bono remarked that he looked forward to having a closer relationship with artists and fans via wireless. U2 in the last tour utilized SMS well. Specifically, they asked fans to text “ONE” (your name would appear on the jumbotron) and you would get connected with Bono’s charity efforts. In any case, I’m looking forward to seeing them take the interactive up a notch.
After the guitar serenade from the Edge, Mr. Lazaridis discussed BlackBerry’s efforts as a media gateway and discussed the various music services for consumers to choose (Slacker, Shazam, Pandora, and ClearChannel iHeart Radio).
APPETITE FOR APP WORLD
Everyone I spoke with was waiting to get some 411 on BlackBerry’s response to iPhone’s App Store and Android’s marketplace. I haven’t had the opportunity to download it yet. However, the responses that I have seen from other tech bloggers seems to be positive.
Mr. Lazaridis highlighted PrimeTime 2 Go (BlackBerry TV), the growth of social applications by users (10 million downloads of FaceBook and MySpace), as well as the livestrong application for BlackBerry.
Stay tuned for more from the show…
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