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Yahoo Excludes BlackBerry From Employee Smartphone List 192

Posted by samzenpus
from the anything-but-that dept.
Nerval's Lobster writes "Freshly minted Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is promising the company's U.S. employees a new smartphone of their choice. There's just one catch: it can't be a BlackBerry. According to Business Insider, which posted significant portions of Mayer's memo, employees will have a choice of the Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X, HTC EVO 4G LTE, Nokia Lumia 920, or the upcoming iPhone 5. 'We'd like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do,' she wrote, adding that Yahoo will shift away from BlackBerry as its corporate device of choice. Somewhere up in Waterloo, at least one Research In Motion executive could be screaming in frustration over this development. Not because Yahoo is a bellwether for corporate smartphone use; its U.S. employees shifting to an iOS, Windows Phone or Android device won't automatically drive other major companies will follow suit. But as a symbol of RIM's current issues, it's difficult to find a better one than a high-profile technology company dumping its collective BlackBerry stock in favor of pretty much any other platform."
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Yahoo Excludes BlackBerry From Employee Smartphone List

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:15AM (#41362915)

    What's next, RIM employees stop using Yahoo for search and tell their employees to use Google or Bing?

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:17AM (#41362935) Journal

    Oww, that has to hurt.

    Yeah, we all knew that RIM was on the outs; but getting cut from the running for 'stodgy corporate issued device' by the somewhat-less-than-vibrant players over at yahoo? Ice burn, man, Ice Burn.

    • Re:Oh Yahoo... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by rgbrenner (317308) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:48AM (#41363311)

      That's one way of interpreting it.

      So here's an ex-google exec saying Yahoo employees can use a bunch of android phones or a currently-unavailable iphone. Didn't a certain Nokia exec do something similar recently.. hmm

      So Yahoo thinks it should discard RIM... When was the last time Yahoo got much of anything right? How do we know this isn't yet another miss-step? Aren't there some BB users that use Yahoo? Wouldn't it be better if Yahoo employees used ALL of the common smartphones?

      • 1% [bgr.com] is "common" now?

        Admittedly I think they're higher than 1% here in the UK, but I've wanted them to die for about 8 years now. I'm happy to see them go. Steam is due out on Linux soon-ish, and MS look like they're going to pull a Vista with Windows 8. All in all, things in the world of technology seem to be heading in a good direction :)

        • by rgbrenner (317308)

          % of mobile traffic != % of smartphone marketshare

        • Admittedly I think they're higher than 1% here in the UK, but I've wanted them to die for about 8 years now.

          That pretty much tells me that you either dont get much work email, or that youre always at your desk. Name me a phone that does better for corp email / calendaring / phonecalls.

      • Buying an iphone 4S would be a waste of money because the 5 will be usable for at least one year longer than the 4S. I am sure that any employees that want an iphone will be glad to wait a week to get the better phone.

    • Yahoo is little more than AOL at this point. I see them as struggling to find a place among other better and more useful brands like Bing and Google. You'd think they would want to BOND with a brand becoming such as RIM who is also becoming less and less relevant by the hour.

      • With(unfortunately for their shareholders) one crucial difference.

        Somehow, I don't know how they did it, AOL took a formerly-high-flying and now rotten from the inside company and somehow conned Time Warner to a merger of almost equals, with AOL on top. Damn. Now, of course, their business consists largely of confused old people who can't figure out how to cancel; but that was their moment.

        Yahoo, by contrast, turned to a rather generous buyout bid and has been slipping fairly steadily in value since....

  • by binarylarry (1338699) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:18AM (#41362963)

    No one buys Microsoft phones.

    They're in the same boat as RIM but they get a pass for some reason.

    I can only assume Microsoft is paying them to stay somehow? Maybe free phones?

    • by DogDude (805747) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:27AM (#41363045) Homepage
      No one buys Microsoft phones.

      Not true. This is posted from a Windows 7 Phone. They work just fine. I'm happy with mine. You don't know what you're talking about.
      • by WiiVault (1039946)
        He should have said almost nobody, which is pretty true. But I'm quite happy with my LG Quantum first gen WP7.5 phone even if others aren't going WP in droves.
      • by Microlith (54737) on Monday September 17, 2012 @12:07PM (#41363585)

        Hey look! You found him!

      • No one buys Microsoft phones.

        Not true. This is posted from a Windows 7 Phone. They work just fine. I'm happy with mine. You don't know what you're talking about.

        The above post is useless with out pictures.

      • by sootman (158191)

        Wow, +5 for that? OBVIOUSLY he didn't truly mean "not one single person on Earth." As of December 2011, Windows Phone was at 1% of the market. [blogs.com] Double that--hell, quadruple it if you want--and it's still not that much.

        Android - 190 M - 31%
        Symbian - 190 M - 31%
        iOS - 114 M - 17%
        Blackberry - 93 M - 14%
        Windows Mobile - 17 M - 3%
        bada - 8 M - 1%
        Windows Phone - 5 M - 1%

        • by DogDude (805747)
          So what? What's your point? The number of users has nothing to do with the quality of the product, or the effectiveness. By that logic, Windows is the best OS in the world, and Linux is the worst. Windows Phones may not be popular, but they do everything that the other phones do, and they do it well, regardless of popularity. Windows Phone and Blackberry are only alike in terms of popularity, not functionality.
        • by cbhacking (979169)

          By Dec 2011, WP7 had been out for just over a year. 5M in one year isn't very good for a smartphone, true. Now, consider that Nokia has sold 7M Lumia devices this year alone - putting them on track for at least 10M and probably more (consider the holiday season). That's just the Nokia WP7 devices; there are a lot of other manufacturers.

          15M by the end of this year, even if we discount everything except the Lumia sales for this year, is 3% market share (possibly a bit less, since the market is growing) and 20

      • None of the people ragging on Blackberry know what theyre talking about either. It seems like noone can consider that there is a market segment that loves what RIM has to offer, just as there is a segment for iPhone and android and WinPhone devices.

    • by Nimey (114278)

      They /are/ using Bing for searches these days, so that's probably something to do with it.

    • No one buys Microsoft phones.

      That's because MS doesn't make phones. Oh wait, you mean the WinPhones make by LG/HTC/Samsung/Nokia et al. They seem to be doing alright collectively.

    • Troll much? It's not exactly a best seller, but you can hardly claim no one buys them.
    • No one buys Microsoft phones.

      They're in the same boat as RIM but they get a pass for some reason.

      I can only assume Microsoft is paying them to stay somehow? Maybe free phones?

      Why support desktop Linux for anything? It has much less market share than Windows Phone. Does that make any sense? Perhaps Yahoo thinks it's good platform showing good promise in the future

      Just Nokia sold 7 million Windows Phones in the last two quarters and the Lumia 920 is looking promising compared to others. While it may not seem like much compared to iPhone and Android it's not negligible.

      Look at this comparison of phones and the poll underneath.

      http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/09/iphone5-spec-show [wired.com]

    • They're in the same boat as RIM but they get a pass for some reason.

      Oh no, Microsoft is in far better shape than RIM. One of the devices supports ActiveSync (like every other smartphone in the last 3-4 years) and one of them requires layers upon layers of provisioned services and dedicated servers.

    • by vux984 (928602)

      I think maybe yahoo just doesn't want to run a BES anymore. :p

  • by NixieBunny (859050) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:19AM (#41362979) Homepage
    This sounds like a ploy to retain employees by tempting them with shiny objects.
  • by Rob the Bold (788862) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:29AM (#41363069)

    CEO Marissa Mayer: "so we can think and work as the majority of our users do".

    That makes sense on the surface, but it doesn't exactly sound like the attitude of a company that wants to be an innovator or technology leader. It might not be the attitude of a market leader, either. [google.com] At the risk of sounding like a fanboy of another big tech firm, "Think Same" may not be the motto to live by. But then I'm CEO of nothing.

    • by vlm (69642) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:38AM (#41363169)

      My WTF was different than yours.

      CEO Marissa Mayer: "so we can think and work as the majority of our users do".

      VLM questions "Yahoo still has users?" Who?

      But then I'm CEO of nothing.

      Patience young grasshopper. Yahoo will achieve nothingness soon enough. Then you can be its CEO.

      I've occasionally wondered how much it would cost to start collecting companies as a hobby. For example, mint condition dotcom 1.0 corporations. How much would it cost me to buy flooz or drkoop.com or whatever it was called? I would imagine there's some ongoing accounting/tax costs. I do know people who collected paper stock certificates, for example Disney's paper stock certs used to be really cool and artistic, and I've always thought a collection of dotcom stock certs would be funny... but why collect a paper printout of a millionth of the dotcom when I could own the whole thing? My budget for this amusement would be on the scale of three digits, four is really pushing it. Is this a realistic collecting hobby for me? I'm not going to be one of those old people collecting a houseful of ceramic frogs... no not me... I'm gonna collect mint condition dotcom 1.0 companies. That sounds like fun.

      • As long as you don't do anything with the company, then it's just maintenance of the registrations and filing of very short annual reports. Your stockholder's meetings could take place in your bathroom.
    • by LoudMusic (199347)

      Sure, but Yahoo doesn't make hardware or consumable software. They provide services on platforms created by other people which are used by their customers. You have to know your customers' experience before you can improve it.

      • Yahoo's customers are advertisers, and viewers are their product, just the same as any television or radio station.
    • by CODiNE (27417)

      At least they intend to think as their CUSTOMERS do and figure out what they want and do daily instead of trying to think as their competitors do.

      That at least, makes sense.

    • You need to understand what people really do in order to innovate.

      Otherwise, how else do you know what needs improvement?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:30AM (#41363083)

    Your ELD is off. [dilbert.com]

  • No real keyboards? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JDG1980 (2438906) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:35AM (#41363141)

    choice of the Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X, HTC EVO 4G LTE, Nokia Lumia 920, or the upcoming iPhone 5

    None of these phones have real keyboards. To those of us with large fingers, that's a deal-breaker when selecting a phone; on-screen keyboards are simply unusable with a screen that small. As much as it sucks in other ways, the BlackBerry at least did offer a hardware keyboard. Yahoo should offer at least one Android phone with an actual keyboard (maybe the Samsung Epic 4G?)

    • by mungtor (306258)

      Apparently you don't need it. The article ridiculously claims that focusing on physical keyboards and long battery life was a "failure" on RIMs part. Somehow they manage to overlook several multi-day network outages as a factor...

    • None of these phones have real keyboards. .. on-screen keyboards are simply unusable with a screen that small.

      That may be a reason for a tech company to give developers (particularly big-fingered ones) keyboardless smartphones.

      "Here, have a difficult constraint. Figure out a way to make it work anyway."

    • by tlhIngan (30335)

      choice of the Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X, HTC EVO 4G LTE, Nokia Lumia 920, or the upcoming iPhone 5

      None of these phones have real keyboards. To those of us with large fingers, that's a deal-breaker when selecting a phone; on-screen keyboards are simply unusable with a screen that small. As much as it sucks in other ways, the BlackBerry at least did offer a hardware keyboard. Yahoo should offer at least one Android phone with an actual keyboard (maybe the Samsung Epic 4G?)

      I believe those are the top-end f

    • by jittles (1613415)
      Are you serious? I have large fingers and I can't use those tiny excuse of plastic they call keys on blackberries. Whereas, I can use the keyboards on android and iOS devices just fine. Why? Because I can keep typing on the soft keyboards and they eventually correct my mistakes. Not so on the blackberry. Its easier for me to thread a needle than to use a blackberry keyboard. Ugh I have hated those things since the beginning, and it is one reason why I never had a blackberry for work. I refused to have on
      • by radtea (464814)

        Are you serious?

        Yeah, believe it or not there are people who have preferences that are not only different from yours, but diametrically opposed to yours. Incredible, isn't it? (Not incredible that people have different preferences, but that you've reached an age where you're posting on /. and apparently are still shocked by this.)

        I have a Blackberry precisely because I have strong personal preference for a physical keyboard, and because they're remarkably robust. I upgraded my phone recently (and ditched the most hideou

        • by jittles (1613415)

          It wasn't a matter of him stating that he preferred a real keyboard for the tactile feel of it, but because he had large fingers. But I can tell you from experience that the keys on a blackberry are tiny indeed, especially for someone with large fingers. It doesn't make any sense that you would chose a tiny little keyboard when you fat finger 3+ keys every time you hit a button. Maybe he has a different definition for large fingers, I don't know.

          I can respect someone preferring a real keyboard, certainly

  • by concealment (2447304) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:35AM (#41363145) Homepage Journal

    Companies that both manufacture hardware and hand-roll their operating systems tend to collapse over time.

    There are too many decisions which must be made centrally, and these involve too many conflicting "business objectives." In other words, the two branches (hardware and OS) can't figure out how to work together to nudge consumers toward spending more money, time and effort on the product.

    Apple ducked this one by purchasing the core of its operating system from two sources, and allowing maintenance to be mostly driven by updates at least one of those OSes (BSD).

    Blackberry has been frozen in motion (like Yahoo), unable to develop new software or hardware at the pace of the market. The result is that the world has moved on and, by parallax motion, RIM has moved backward.

    • by unimacs (597299)
      Most companies tend to collapse over time. Think of all the PC manufacturers who got their OS from MS but are now long gone.

      By contrast IBM has done pretty well designing both hardware and the OS that runs on them. Their mainframe business has been around for 60 years. Their PC business, - which followed your preferred model, was abandoned years ago.
  • Server side software (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ERJ (600451) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:42AM (#41363227)
    We run a small business and I can say that our IT group was quite happy when we moved away from blackberry devices. Not because of the phones themselves but instead because of the server side software. It is very likely things have changed since we stopped using their phones but I can tell you that we would be constantly losing device sync between the server side and the phones and would have to manually resync the connections. If that software is still in use I can see how companies the size of Yahoo would want to not have to support the additional infrastructure that is needed for the blackberry devices.
  • Wow... (Score:5, Funny)

    by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:42AM (#41363233)

    It's like being dumped by the dorkiest fat kid in school.

  • by Mr_Silver (213637) on Monday September 17, 2012 @11:47AM (#41363295)

    'We'd like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do,' she wrote, adding that Yahoo will shift away from BlackBerry as its corporate device of choice.

    As much as I hate to say it, I don't think that moving people from BlackBerry to Windows Phone will solve the problem she's describing.

  • Or are they talking about the old ones still lying about?

    Damn, technology moves just too quickly for me to keep up with it.

  • It's a strange choice. Two HTCs, the Samsung that isn't as good in the USA as the equivalent South Korean version, a phone that may not be available for months and another one that the IT department won't have had time to check for compatibility and security. One small(ish) one and four big ones. It looks like a collection thrown together by someone in HR who had a quick read of gsmarena or bgr and then asked their usual supplier for their best prices.

    Fortunately there isn't the slightest possibility that I

  • BES stinks. BIS stinks. The whole Blackberry "dumbphone" concept stinks (the devices just don't work without RIM servers, billed to end users as an extra cost in your phone bill).

    Blackberry's failure to adopt ActiveSync - which became nearly ubiquitous among smartphones several years ago - is a big part of their downfall.

    Blackberry users have been paying more for less for far too long.
  • by swschrad (312009) on Monday September 17, 2012 @12:49PM (#41364089) Homepage Journal

    that's so 90s.

  • Nice! (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I wish I worked at a tech company that would do something like that for it's employees, although granted it is a work phone though... *shrugs*

    I think RIM seriously needs to rethink their strategy when it comes to users and business which to them have been one and the same. Except while their infrastructure might have been the "bees knees" 5-10 years ago, it's old and unreliable to most of what people use today. for instance my parents used blackberries (despite my constant objections) up until their last

  • ... and now they've been kicked in the groin!

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