Does T-Mobile owe BlackBerry anything?

Does T-Mobile owe BlackBerry anything?

Summary: T-Mobile hasn't been much of a loyal pal to BlackBerry, but then again the device maker needs to produce a hit instead of worrying about rallying customer outrage over the carrier's email campaign encouraging a swap to the iPhone.


T-Mobile targeted BlackBerry uses with an email offer urging them to swap to Apple's iPhone. The ensuing hubbub, outlined in a blog post from BlackBerry CEO John Chen, raises a key question: How much loyalty do wireless carriers owe smartphone makers?


To be sure, T-Mobile wasn't the ideal partner since it launched its campaign, kicked BlackBerry while it was down and never gave the company a heads up.

Chen thanked customers and said:

To T-Mobile, I would like to remind you that our long-standing partnership was once productive and profitable for both BlackBerry and T-Mobile. I hope we can find a way forward that allows us to serve our shared customers once again. Notwithstanding the current challenge, we remain very excited about BlackBerry’s future.

The big question: What does T-Mobile owe BlackBerry? Customers have gone to other devices in many cases and T-Mobile would obviously like to retain those folks on its network should they switch phones.

BlackBerry and T-Mobile along with other carriers have been strong partners for years, but if the devices aren't selling perhaps loyalty only goes so far. Instead of bemoaning the situation and rallying mock outrage, BlackBerry's time may be better spent creating a kick-ass device that brings customers back. And then BlackBerry should give that device to every carrier but T-Mobile.

Topics: Mobility, BlackBerry, Smartphones, Telcos

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  • Who says they have to owe BlackBerry anything?

    Chen took the side of his customers... an entirely reasonable thing to do. It isn't what T-Mobile owes that drove this comment - its the fact that any company is going to amplify any favourable lobbying their fans do.... they'd be crazy not to.
  • I'm sure it's disappointing for Blackberry ...

    but it sure as hell should not be a surprise!
  • What's owed

    isn't from T-Mobile to BlackBerry. What's owed is from BlackBerry to T-Mobile. And the thing that is owed:

    A big fat middle finger.
    Jacob VanWagoner
  • BlackBerry's time

    " BlackBerry's time may be better spent creating a kick-ass device that brings customers back."

    Maybe you should pay more attention.

    Read "The BlackBerry Challenge, Cheating On My iPhone With A BlackBerry Z30" by DadDoes, where an Apple fanboy traded his iPhone 5 for a BlackBerry Z30 for a week, and he loved it, even better than he loved his iPhone.

    "Here is the crazy thing, for that 90% of the time, I preferred using the BlackBerry Z30 over my iPhone 5."

    "the Z30 has a battery that is double the power of my iPhone "

    "I loved the BlackBerry Hub and the way that all messages (emails, text, Tweets, FB updates, calendar events) appear in one place, that can be easily accessed at any time. It all just works beautifully in real world use. I could be in Evernote (yes, there is Evernote for the BB OS 10) and see new messages come in, all without ever leaving Evernote. Now, I just need this for the real world. "

    "the predictive keyboard on the Z30 works great"
  • No

    TMO owes BB nothing. TMO is trying to keep and grow their subscribers. It's not persoanl, just business. I use a Z10 and like it, but the notion that TMO owes BB something is laughable.
  • And suggesting a struggling device maker tell T-Mobile to take a hike is...

    silly! Blackberry needs every delivery channel it can find. To think it will be serving itself by not providing new product via T-Mobile is suicidal.
  • I defended Blackberry

    … up until they screwed all their tablet customers, who had been promised BB10 and acted as a test base for development of the OS, by reneging on their BB10 promise and instead deserted, dropped and dumped on their most loyal customers.
    Now many promised apps are appearing on BB10 and not the playbook, while playbook apps gradually fail through lack of updates from devs.