John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

RIM’s Heins: Anyone Interested in Licensing BlackBerry 10? Anyone? Bueller?

Research In Motion hasn’t yet committed to licensing its forthcoming BlackBerry 10 operating system, but the steady string of comments to that effect coming from its leadership certainly suggest that it is preparing to.

In an interview with The Telegraph earlier this month, RIM CEO Thorsten Heins said the company is investigating different options for licensing BB10.

Now he’s gone ahead and suggested to Bloomberg that the company has determined that it is indeed possible to license the OS the same way it does the QNX platform on which it was developed.

“QNX is already licensed across the automotive sector — we could do that with BB10 if we chose to,” Heins said. “The platform can be licensed.”

That’s as definitive a statement on the BB10 licensing issue as we’ve heard yet. And while it’s certainly not confirmation that RIM will license BB10, it’s a pretty clear indication that it plans to — assuming it can find someone interested in licensing it.

And that’s the likely purpose of this steady string of licensing patter appearing in the media: A fishing expedition for possible licensees. After all, who might possibly be interested in the as-of-yet unreleased and unproven OS? Nokia has cast its lot with Microsoft’s Windows Phone OS. And Motorola, Samsung and HTC have all cast theirs with Google’s Android OS. Both platforms have broader and stronger app ecosystems than RIM’s.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald