Share this Story

Blackberry CEO Thinks Tablets Won’t Have a Future in 5 Years


What would you say if I told you that tablets were going to be dinosaurs in five years? You would think I was crazy, right? Well, what if the CEO of a one-time powerful mobile computing company actually said those words, would you react differently? Depends on who it is? It’s Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins. 

My first reaction to comments he made to Bloomberg this week of “In five years, I don’t think there’ll be a reason to have a tablet anymore,” is to wonder if this man has lost his mind. But then if you think about it for a couple of seconds, you’ll realize he probably has lost his mind, since he still thinks that Blackberry stands a chance. Or maybe because he priced the QWERTY Blackberry Q10 mid-range throwback smartphone at $249 on two-year contract, $50 higher than real smartphones of today. Or maybe because he took the job as CEO of Blackberry, knowing full well they had become one of the saddest mobile stories in recent memory.

No matter what, Heins isn’t a fan of the tablet. He continued his comments by saying that “tablets themselves are not a good business model,” and that businesses will maybe have big screens in workspaces instead.

Again, what is this man smoking? I think we all fully understand that the Blackberry Playbook, their take on a tablet, was a colossal failure, but the rest of the tablet industry is doing quite well, especially in the corporate environment. For example, I had an eye exam this morning and also an opportunity to pick out some new frames. This eye doctor would easily fit into the small business category, but even they had an iPad handy so that could show me multiple colors of frames, check availability, and help me ultimately decide. Or think about the restaurant Tim and I ate at in Vegas during CES, that handed us interactive menus on an iPad with wine, cocktails, food, and appetizers. Tablets are the future, and are a good business model.

I’m sort of at a loss for words. Your thoughts? Will tablets be gone from our lives in five years?

Via:  Bloomberg

  • kevin

    waiting for a meme now with his photo…. ahahhaha

  • blkalleykat

    Hmm he may need to rethink his outlook. Many companies can easily use tablets to replace books or have them as an alternative. Libraries, schools, and bookstores. There is plently of money to be made in the E-book field. Thus the kindles, and nooks popping up all over the place.

  • blackberry will be gone, he means, and hopefully sooner than 5 years

  • micropro

    He is absolutely correct in the sense the tablet will not be the same tablet we have today. Everything will be moving towards the direction of the Microsoft Surface Pro. It has a tablet interface as well as a full on desktop mode. The best of both worlds in one device. No one will want to carry around a tablet and a laptop when they can have them both in the same device. Think about it…

  • GreenMeansGo

    “There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.” And, for those who do put one in their home, “640K ought to be enough for anybody.”

  • This guy is just as big as a failure as his predecessor.

  • Chris Clancy

    I lol’d so hard at this

  • Noomski

    Yesterday I spent 6+ hours with a colleague prepping a Z10 for a client. We spent much of that time trying to find a simple way to import a nokia feature phones contacts into the Z10. In the end we needed to import the numbers into Outlook, export the PST and then import them into his outlook profile. Then finally using Activesync to get the contacts into the phone. However, Importing numbers from a feature phone to an HTC Desire HD took seconds..

    During that same day while picking up my lunch the guy in front of me at the checkout took out his phone to answer a call.. The phone was a blackberry Z10. He swiped aimlessly trying to answer the call for about 15 seconds before putting the phone back in his pocket.. still ringing!!!….

    (not one single fact above is invented or embellished)

  • Lane252

    I’m really concerned @ why he is worried about tables over his own job…the opinion of a jobless person should not hold any weight!

  • Elliot Kotis

    No wonder they don’t get anywhere, same with Microsoft, their CEO said that iPhone 1 was stupid because it had no physical keyboard, he also laughed at android AND ChromeOS.


  • Tablets may need 5 years to reach their End of Life, but with such a good CEO, BB co doesn’t needs that much time…

  • Jim McClain

    Wonder if Blackberry will be around 5 years

  • This reminds me of Steve Jobs saying that no one wants a 7″ tablet.

  • Tim242

    He makes some sense. Tablets are not a good business model. They are too expensive for what their limits are. The less expensive tablets get gimped on specs. I never have understood the point of tablets

  • rdoib

    Yes and ice cream and choclate will be free for everyone and wont fat any1.

  • Android Geek

    I’m shorting the stock based off of these comments alone.

  • Chris Mullins

    Blackberry, what are you doing, just stop.

  • Capt. Crunch

    I think they will evolve into ultra books. If it were up to me i would have a tablet with the power of an ultra book and a removable keyboard.

  • Anon

    No matter what I think of Blackberry or its execs, I have wondered this for some time myself. Will tablets be the next “netbook”?
    I don’t think so, but I don’t know if they’ll be the hot thing they are now. They have modest productivity uses, but the moment you need to type something big or multitask, you’re limited. They’re great for seniors or people who just want to peruse the Internet, check e-mail, play a few games, maybe read an e-book, but if you have a fairly portable laptop and a smartphone, I think you already have the best of both worlds.

    • Tim242

      My sentiments exactly!

  • I know of at least 4 major corporations that are in the process of phasing out Blackberrys from their IT structure entirely, and even with a conservative estimate of 50% of their employee base that’s over 20,000 units gone. My own company has even gone so far as to announce a hard cutoff date for support of the devices, so even if someone were to buy their own they’d have to figure out their own workarounds to use it with our systems, and the vast majority of BB users aren’t at that level of tech savvy.

  • HP

    Coming from the CEO of a company that lost the largest smartphone market share in history. Dumb Ass


    So many Blackberry execs have came out with ridiculous statements, why is the media even giving these guys attention?

    • Radgatt

      Because its a ridiculous statement.


        Many idiots make ridiculous statements every day, why should we pay mind to them?

  • yummy

    This is not the man I would
    look to for advice about, well…..anything.

  • Exzaybien

    Just added this to my calendar in 2018, I predict that in 5yrs I’m gonna lmao

    • Radgatt

      Don’t forget to save the link

  • Shin77

    If you look at how quickly technology evolves it’s not totally out of the question. The tablet was introduced over 10 years ago by MS but failed, now it works because many of the issues with the first go around were addressed. What happens when they perfect flexible screens and you can just roll-up your computer? You had to dump a ton of R&D and equipment into ramping up to even be price competitive and the margins are only getting slimmer. How long do you think it will be before hybrids become affordable? I’m not a fan of this guy, just saying that 5 years is a long time and a lot can change, his comments aren’t that outrageous in context.

  • M3D1T8R

    Sold my BBRY stock today, for a nice profit.

    Q10 might succeed somewhat for business customers, but pricing it at 250 +2yr is too high, greedy, could backfire. Z10 is already year old specs priced same as new high end phones One, S4 etc.

    And then I hear this, Heins calling the death of tablets. Maybe I don’t have all the context but he just seems more and more out of touch.

    BBRY has to hope they get bought out. Their two new decent BB10 devices won’t even be fully available for another month (despite the big release end of January, four months!) and they’re already falling behind again.

    • LionStone

      I spotted a Q10 today in Atlanta at the airport 🙂

  • Samsung rules!

    Blackberry…..rhymes with CRAPBERRY

  • nalpakj

    Just in the spirit of trying to understand his comments, I wonder if the sentiment is that in 5 years tablets won’t be quite as special purpose. By special purpose I mean that right now you probably have a tablet AND you have a computer (laptop or otherwise). My hope, and a reality that is getting closer and closer all the time, is that my ‘tablet’ in 5 years will be my full-time computer. In other words it will be a true blending of the portable thing we call a tablet today and a full-featured device that supports the enterprise in full as well the email/browsing functionality that is the primary use of tablets today. So, does this mean tablets are not a thing in 5 years…no…but they aren’t the specialty category that they are today. They just become the standard.

    That all being said…the man is either out of his mind or just lacks the ability to clearly communicate his point.

  • Lucky Armpit

    Too bad your doctor’s appointment and the restaurant used Sheep Pads. Sorry about that.

  • More like the tablet/ultrabook will merge into a single device at some point.