RIM CEO Thorsten Heins clarifies comments on change, rejects Android speculation

Freshly anointed RIM CEO Thorsten Heins sat down with Crackberry this week to discuss his vision for the future of BlackBerry, his thoughts on Android and, most strikingly, his recent comments about maintaining the status quo. Shortly after his appointment, Heins issued a video address in which he implicitly claimed that RIM doesn't need an overhaul. "If we continue doing well what we're doing, I see no problems with us being in the top three players worldwide in the next years in wireless," the exec said. At the time, we and many other observers read this as a sign that the Heins era would look a lot like the Balsillie-Lazaridis era, but according to the new CEO, that's not the case. "I was talking about drastic or seismic changes," he clarified. "What I was trying to address was that there was some suggestion that RIM should be split up or should even be sold. My true belief is that RIM has the strength and the assets that we can really succeed in this market." Heins went on to claim that there's already "a lot of change" going on at the company -- citing the company's adoption of QNX as a prime example -- and that there's "no standstill at any moment here at RIM."

During the same sitdown, Heins also reiterated his belief that RIM shouldn't outsource its software needs to Android, because BlackBerry, in his view, is a hallmark of differentiation. "Just take a look where the Android OEMs are," Heins said. "Take a look at their recent announcements and what you will immediately see is there is just no room for differentiation because they are all the same." The exec acknowledged that RIM may be taking the road less traveled, but seemed confident in its ability to rise to the challenge -- even if there are some bumps along the way. "This is not baking cookies," Heins elaborated. "This is building high tech products. From time to time your aspirations and your development timelines hit some bumps in the road that were not foreseen."