Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Who Wants A Used BlackBerry?

BlackBerry announced today that it would stop making its own handsets and would exit the tech devices business. Going forward it will only focus on selling software and services.

The first BlackBerry was introduced in 1999 when Bill Clinton was President when it was the first mobile device to integrate email into a mobile device.

1999: The first BlackBerry

At its zenith in 2008, BlackBerry accounted for one in every five smartphones sold, after its handsets became a staple for business executives. Designed to be as easy for writing emails as making phone calls, they eventually captured the consumer market too.
As sales soared, the company’s market value hit $80bn, compared with roughly $4bn today. 

BlackBerry's problems began with the introduction of Apple's iPhone and got worse as Samsung also introduced innovative smartphone devices. BlackBerry never competed successfully thereafter seeing their market share drop from 20% to not much more than the rounding error it holds today---0.1 per cent.

BlackBerry simply did not change and adapt to the new world it found itself in.

In many respects, the story of BlackBerry is symbolic when compared to one of its most ardent devotees---Hillary Rodham Clinton.

In fact, if Hillary is to be believed, the sole reason she set up her private email server is because she she could not get both her State Department emails and personal emails on a BlackBerry. The reason---National Security Agency officials told her there were security vulnerabilities in using BlackBerry devices for secure communications or in secure areas. She was told that State would provide her with a secure device for her work emails.

However, this was not acceptable to Hillary. She did not want to be "inconvenienced" in having two devices so she circumvented national security and freedom of information laws so she could get her work emails on her beloved BlackBerry.

Of course, a far superior product, the iPhone had been introduced on June 29, 2007, almost 18 months before Hillary even took office as Secretary of State. However, Hillary was still clinging to the past...and her BlackBerry.

If you don't believe me on how totally and completely Hillary was wedded to the past consider this incredible story that was in the recently released FBI files on their investigation of her private email server.

It seems that Hillary often had trouble with her Blackberry (for example, she once spilled coffee on it) and she often broke them or they stopped working. It seems she also had trouble in using new Blackberry models when her old model had to be replaced. She apparently did not adapt well to change. This is one of the reasons the FBI indicated she eventually used 13 different devices during her four year tenure as Secretary of State.

Therefore, according to the FBI investigative files, her "confidential assistant" (a young woman named Monica Hanley) was tasked with trying to find the old BlackBerry model that Hillary knew how to use.

In the released documents, Hanley emerged as the go-to staffer often tasked with finding replacements to satisfy Clinton’s chosen use of non-secure BlackBerries. Hanley stated she tried to find BlackBerries for sale on eBay and admitted that she made a trip to a mall in Virginia to try to find devices for sale. (emphasis added).

Yes, you read that right. Hillary was so inept and so concerned about her own convenience that she had a staffer shopping on eBay to find a used Blackberry to continue receiving confidential, classifed and other emails on her personal device!

Her campaign for President seems to be no different. Everything there also seems to be dated, tired and used.

Can anyone find anything new in what she is saying or promising? I can only think of one thing, her proposed "free college tuition" plan, and that is not really her plan to begin with. That was only added to her campaign plank to gain the endorsement of Bernie Sanders and attempt to attract disaffected Sanders supporters. Of course, we still don't know how all of that free stuff will be paid for.

On almost everything else it is like we are back in the 1990's with Hillary trying to survive by invoking nostalgic memories of the Clinton White House of two decades ago. Of course, she would rather we forget about Whitewater, Vince Foster, Travelgate, FBI Filegate, Monica Lewinsky, Chinagate, Pardongate and the looting of $200,000 in furnishings when she left The White House.

In many ways this election is like the choice between buying a used BlackBerry and a new iPhone 7.

Hillary is the BlackBerry. There is nothing that is new or exciting about it. It is the past. It is over.

Trump is the iPhone. It is new, different and promises a new way. It is the future. It is a new beginning.

If you need to explain this election simply to a Millennial or someone else who is uncertain on how to vote, why don't you ask them this simple question?

Who wants a used BlackBerry these days?

I guess you might take one if it was free and someone also offered to pay your monthly bills to boot.

However, if it is your money, there should be little doubt.

And the fact that Hillary Clinton apparently received confidential and classified emails on a used BlackBerry she got on eBay should be reason enough to remove all remaining doubt.

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