BlackBerry recently launched its new BlackBerry Z10 smartphone, which the company has positioned as its most innovative handset to date. Thorsten Heins, CEO of BlackBerry, is so confident with the new technology he decided to take a swipe at rival manufacturer Apple, saying its iPhone is five years out of date.
Heins recently spoke to The Australian Financial Review, commenting: “The rate of innovation is so high in our industry that if you don’t innovate at that speed you can be replaced pretty quickly.
“The user interface on the iPhone, with all due respect for what this invention was all about is now five years old.”
This got us thinking about the technological advancements made by both companies, and how each had had its time in the limelight. But what does the future hold and which of these mobile manufacturers is going to come out on top?
BlackBerry has indeed been responsible for many an innovation, perhaps most notably its BlackBerry Enterprise Server software package that allows for push email and synchronised messaging accounts across different devices. The BlackBerry Messenger free instant messaging service was also another key creation by the company and helped entice both business users and young people to choose a BlackBerry over other mobiles.
More recently, BlackBerry has made innovations with its BlackBerry 10 operating system seen on the BlackBerry Z10. Some of the stand-out features include BlackBerry Flow, a ground-breaking concept that replaces a traditional smartphone homescreen with several gridded screens that users navigate using swipe gestures. By swiping on the BlackBerry Z10’s touchscreen display, users are able to pull in overlapping screens for each of the handset’s apps or features they wish to use, flowing in and out of different screens for quick access. The Time Shift camera function is also really imaginative, because it allows users to rewind and fast-forward photos milliseconds before and after pictures are taken.
On the other side of the fence, Apple’s most major innovation is arguably the iPhone, which combined the usual text and call functions with an internet browser and music and video player. The original iPhone, launched in 2007, tempted customers with its App Store, which offers users the ability to add extra software, games and applications to their handset. Apps are an area that BlackBerry has never fully managed to conquer, and at present the BlackBerry World app store holds around 100,000 apps in comparison to an estimated 800,000 apps in Apple’s App Store.
Apple also forged ahead with its music software, iTunes, and iPod MP3 players. iTunes allows desktop users to buy and organise their music, as well as sync it with other devices such as the iPhone and iPod. iTunes played a major part in the music industry going digital, changing the way people consumed music. Apple has also managed to keep the momentum going with its iPad tablet range, releasing at least one new device each year since 2010. Although Apple wasn’t the first to create a tablet, its iPad is now the most widely recognised slate in the world. In comparison, BlackBerry has announced there will be no new BlackBerry tablets this year, which is disappointing seeing as the company has just released new software.
Historically, BlackBerry has been more pioneering, whereas Apple has had the knack of appropriating new technology and passing it off as its own. However, this has been a very profitable way for the company to operate. Before BlackBerry 10 was unveiled, BlackBerry had been stagnating and sales figures had dipped, so only time will tell if BlackBerry 10 will turn the manufacturer’s fortunes around. With BlackBerry 10 now unleashed on the world, it looks like BlackBerry has already shown us its main innovation of 2013.
Apple is yet to unveil any new tech this year, but Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s chief financial officer, recently announced that the company is spending $10bn investing in its future in 2013. This signals that Apple is planning to innovate in the coming year and not rest on its laurels. We’ll have to wait and see what the Cupertino-based firm has up its sleeve before making a final verdict on which of the two companies might offer greater innovations for the future, but with Heins mudslinging already, it looks like the war between the rivals could get very messy indeed.
This guest blog was written by Abbi Cox of Phones 4u. To read a selection of mobile phone reviews visit the Phones 4u News & Community.
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