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Category: Tech

Blackberry Torch: The Failure is Not in the Figures but in the Great Expectations

Written on August 19, 2010 by Rudfer Tyron

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In its first three days in the market, only 150,000 people brought home a Blackberry Torch. Only 150,000? Sales-wise, the figure is not at all groundlicking. But the problem lies entirely at RIM's sales talk.

A collective voice touting as a massive failure is what puts it in the news, not the unit sales. Selling 150,000 handsets is, in fact, not at all bad when compared to other major releases last year. Sprint Evo 4G hit numbers just as many, while Palm Pre-managed sold thrice less than this.

What did not rival is the iPhone. Apple got customers by the million, and some 1.7 million of them brought home their iPhones during the launch. So where does the ’s problem lie?

It is when RIM believed its own marketing, which is admittedly good. The was not just another smartphone to RIM–it was the smartphone. RIM CEO Jim Baisillie described it as “a quantum leap over anything that’s out there.” Corresponding videos hyping 6 oozed borderline confidence. Perhaps, RIM did not just buy its own hype–it got blinded by it too.

Surely the figures did not surpass the great expectations of the makers of the most popular corporate smartphone. It is disappointing to note that shelves were not emptied even at Amazon’s markdown to $99 for the Blackberry Torch. They were expecting an avalanche of unit sales when the gates opened, but their core market remains the enterprise. So they never saw their expectations transpire as they stepped in a new territory. And so the story goes: When the Blackberry Torches flew off the shelves, they left the other s there, and that was when the Torch’s fire began flickering. RIM’s hype is the machine that extinguishes it.

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