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BlackBerry CEO unfairly mocked for questioning tablets’ dominion

John Cox | May 2, 2013
BlackBerry CEO Thorstein Heins mentioned in a Bloomberg interview Tuesday that he thought that "In five years I don’t think there’ll be a reason to have a tablet anymore." He was quickly denounced for ignoring the iPad, not owning up to the failure of BlackBerry's own PlayBook tablet, and in general for "trashtalking" tablets and "being hopelessly out of touch."

Finally, regarding his belief that there wont be a need for tablets in five years, Heins ironically seems to have more faith, whether justified or not, in innovation than the technology bloggers and pundits who continually call for more of it, and complain that Apple has lost it. He seems to believe that the pace and quality of innovation really could change the mobile market into something quite different five years from now.

According to figures at AAPLInvestors,it took the iPod 24 quarters to reach 119 million in total sales; 17 quarters for iPhone to reach just under 129 million; and just 11 for the iPad to reach 121 million in total units sold.

The pace of innovation gives at least some credence to the idea Heins may be reading the market more realistically than his critics. If he turns out to be right, then perhaps in 2018 well look back on tablets the same way that, today, we look back on mp3 music players.


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