BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) is said to be reviving talks with Samsung to license its upcoming BlackBerry 10 (BB10) platform. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek believes that the strategic review of the company’s position will culminate with RIM licensing BB10 and Samsung is the likely company to license it, AllThingsD reports. This comes merely days after CEO Thorsten Heins accepted in an interview that RIM does not have the capability to offer BB10 across the price spectrum and would look at partnerships with others. Also Read - Smartphones set to launch in December 2021: From Motorola, Micromax, OnePlus, and more
“We don’t have the economy of scale to compete against the guys who crank out 60 handsets a year. We have to differentiate and have a focused platform. To deliver BB10 we may need to look at licensing it to someone who can do this at a way better cost proposition than I can do it. There’s different options we could do that we’re currently investigating,” Heins said in an interview with UK’s Telegraph. Also Read - Losing thousands of Twitter followers? Here’s why that might be happening
Misek believes that RIM is already talking to Samsung for licensing BB10. “Given recent management comments in the press, it now appears that RIM is realizing what Wall Street has been saying for some time: they are a subscale manufacturer and desperately need a partner. We believe RIM is attempting to revive discussions with Samsung regarding a BB10 licensing deal,” he wrote in a note to clients. Also Read - Meta adds new features in Facebook, Instagram for women's safety in India
Like I had written the day Heins’ interview was published, Samsung seems to be a logical candidate for licensing BB10, provided the platform is launched and does everything that RIM promises it would do. Samsung has already stated that it wants to be on every possible platform. Having BB10 would not only provide it with an alternative to Android (considering Nokia is Microsoft’s preferred partner for Windows Phone) but also give it access to millions of BlackBerry users across the world. However, Misek goes a step further in his note.
“We believe Samsung is considering ramping up its internal OS development efforts, licensing BB10, or buying RIM,” he wrote. “We think any acquisition is unlikely until after BB10 launches.”
This is not the first time we are hearing rumors about RIM courting Samsung or the possibility of Samsung acquiring RIM. We had heard something similar in January but a Samsung spokesman had said back then that the company is not interested in an outright purchase of Research In Motion. “We haven’t considered acquiring the firm and are not interested in (buying RIM),” Samsung spokesman James Chung told Reuters.
We have reached out to both RIM and Samsung for comments and will update this post as soon as we hear from them.
Update: In an official statement to BGR India, Samsung has said ” Samsung Electronics has not considered the acquisition of Research in Motion or licensing BB10.” Similarly, RIM has told us that ” RIM will not be able to comment on any rumour and speculation.”