Interview with Ross Taggart,
Director of Indirect Partnerships
Research In Motion
In general, why is BlackBerry is excited to sponsor the Summit?
“For many years, even before the smartphone revolution took off, we at RIM have been advocating in the dealer channel that data and smartphones are the future of wireless. With the advent and rapid adoption of the RQ4 retail management platform, it has been much easier to prove the case with dealer partners that BlackBerry is a highly profitable product and brand to be supporting in retail.
“Particular to this year, the Summit is timed perfectly with the launches of our BlackBerry 7 smartphones, and with some of our platform updates. The show should really allow us to show our core dealers the way in which BlackBerry is evolving as a leader in the wireless Industry, and how our products are becoming a key collaborative tool for consumers.
“Without a doubt, our goal in the sponsoring the Summit is to show the dealers that BlackBerry powers the mobile community.
“I also can’t think of another industry event that brings together the top tier dealers to one place to productively discuss the industry cross carrier in the format of a summit.”
Looking at the Summit agenda, is there anything that stands out for you, in particular?
“I think as with most people attending, I take great interest in the product announcements, keynotes, and industry comparisons. What I have gotten the most out of in the past years is the feedback I receive in talking with the dealers who are at the show and many of the other vendors.”
Any big announcements related to BlackBerry devices or features that you’d like wireless retailers showcasing in their stores?
“Agents using the new BlackBerry Bold, Torch, or Curve know that RIM has knocked it out of the park with this lineup, and the OS 7 powering them is unbelievably fast and packed with improvements. The new lineup offers better communications, multimedia and a top of the line productivity experience. For those who wanted improved web browsing, they’ve got it,” Taggart says.
“And then we’ve taken it further with universal search capabilities, liquid graphics, built-in support for NFC, and HD video. I’m using the new BlackBerry Bold and finding its touch display works perfectly for me, plus I still have the full QWERTY keyboard. The BlackBerry Torch 9850/9860 has the largest touch display of any smartphones in the lineup though, and its full touch is great for those using the HD video recorder or playing games. And the BlackBerry Curve is the thinnest of the models. Perfect for using the new BBM 6, which supports BBM connected apps (available through BlackBerry App World), so BlackBerry users can easily interact with each other with BBM.
“RIM has also pre-announced BBM Music, which is expected to be commercially available later this year. BBM Music is a cloud-based, social music service that allows users to share and discover music with their friends, creating a continually evolving music library -- a truly social community-based music experience on BlackBerry.
“At the show last year, we showcased the BlackBerry PlayBook, so you can see how we’ve since then built out a rich ecosystem of smartphones, tablets, services that truly offer our retailers the solutions their customers are looking for and the full BlackBerry experience. If there has ever been a time to lead with BlackBerry, it is now -- we’re doing great things to help users collaborate and make the most of every moment.
“Plus, RIM with support from Superior Communications, Mobileistic and Tessco are offering a great profit opportunity to agents on three BlackBerry authentic accessory bundles for the holiday selling season. So we’ve got solutions for our agents, and I’m looking forward to hearing some feedback at the Summit.”
What benefits can RQ4 users enjoy, as a result of the iQmetrix-BlackBerry partnership?
“As many longtime RQ4 users know, BlackBerry was the first mobile device by which you could take your information out of the store with the original PocketRQ product.
“With our new tablets and handhelds, we hope that dealers will continue to enjoy mobile access of their retail intelligence, as well as using RQ4’s marketing and customer retention modules to keep BlackBerry customers loyal on the newest devices with the best OEM accessories.”
For information about the upcoming 2011 Wireless Summit in Miami (Oct. 16-18) and to register, visit http://summit.iQmetrix.com/