In an interview with The Australian Financial Review, BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins took aim at the iPhone, stating that Apple is falling behind in terms of innovation in the smartphone market. He claims that the iPhone user interface is now 5 years old, and has seen no innovation in that time.
“Apple did a fantastic job in bringing touch devices to market … They did a fantastic job with the user interface, they are a design icon. There is a reason why they were so successful, and we actually have to admit this and respect that,” Mr Heins said.
“History repeats itself again I guess … 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.”
Mr Heins said one area that the new BlackBerry phones had surpassed the iPhone was in the ability to multi-task – running multiple apps at once – meaning that users could work in the same fashion on their smartphone as they liked to on a laptop.
Heins also stated that he feels that the new BlackBerry 10 platform has out-innovated Apple in a number of areas, including multitasking, noting that BlackBerry 10 devices can run up to eight apps in the background simultaneously. Apple is famously strict about background tasks, and does not allow most types of tasks to run in the background due to battery life concerns.
Is it just me, or is it downright laughable for BlackBerry’s CEO to ding Apple for a lack of innovation just because they haven’t majorly redesigned iOS, when BlackBerry 10 devices have yet to prove themselves in the industry (and coming from BlackBerry’s currently nearly non-existent presence in today’s smartphone market)?
While it’s true that Apple could perhaps bring more innovation to their mobile platform, Heins’ comments are a bit too ballsy, and his own platform far too unproven for him to be making such radical claims. BlackBerry nearly drove themselves to extinction due to a profound lack of innovation. The same cannot be said of Apple.
Nice try, Mr. Heins.