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CMO leaves RIM before iPad challenger launch

BlackBerry Playbook by RIM to compete directly with Apple iPad 2 without help from CMO Keith Pardy

Technology trends and news by Ronny Kerr
March 7, 2011
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/17d2

Keith Pardy, chief marketing officer for Research in Motion (RIM), is stepping down from his position for “personal reasons,” the company announced late last week.
 
The decision arrives at an unfortunate time, as RIM is preparing to launch its very first tablet computer, the BlackBerry Playbook, sometime before the end of April. The new market entrant  will have its work cut out, as Apple continues to draw a great deal of attention over its just announced, new iPad iteration. Half the fuel behind Apple’s sales achievements comes from its well-greased marketing machine, and RIM will need all the help it can get to face that power.
 
While Pardy will continue to help RIM transition over the next six months, his role will likely be much lighter than it was when he served as CMO.
 
Because it’s clear that the BlackBerry Playbook will be competing with the Apple iPad 2, here is a rundown of some technical specifications for the two devices:
 
BlackBerry Playbook
 
  • 7 inch display, 1024 x 600 screen resolution
  • 1 GHz dual-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 3G and 4G
  • 3 MP high-definition forward-facing camera
  • 5 MP high-definition rear-facing camera
 Apple iPad 2
  • 9.7 inch display, 1024x768 resolution
  • 1 GHz dual-core processor
  • (unknown memory)
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and 3G
  • (no data on forward-facing camera)
  • 720p rear-facing camera (about 0.7 MP)
It will be a fierce battle, once these two hit the market.

In spite of the unexpected blow to the company’s marketing division, RIM is expected to make a rebound in domestic growth, after a couple years of market share loss attributable to the Apple iPhone and Google Android. The BlackBerry maker attracted a number of top hedge funds in the fourth quarter, according to Reuters.
 
Besides the imminent launch of the Playbook tablet, RIM has also made a splash among investors for its often overlooked international growth. While revenue in the United States, Canada and Britain grew less than 6 percent to $8.8 billion, revenue outside those three countries more than doubled to $5.6 billion in the first nine months of the company's fiscal 2011.

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