Will Microsoft get into the Blackberry business? Crazy as it sounds, such a scenario could come to pass as an increasingly desperate Research In Motion's reportedly considers various options,
including bringing Microsoft into the fold.
“One of these options is for RIM to abandon its own operating system and adopt Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8,” Reuters reports, citing sources. “Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer had approached RIM in recent months, looking to strike a partnership similar to the one the software giant has with Nokia Oyj, the sources said.”
In such a scenario, RIM could also look for Microsoft to buy a stake in the company and fund marketing and other expenses, sources tell Reuters.
“New RIM CEO Thorsten Heins reiterated yesterday (after the release of a disastrous earnings report) that he’s not interested in switching to any alternative OS, be it Windows Phone or Android," Forbes reports.
Indeed, such an “option is not attractive to RIM because it would mean the end of the Waterloo, Ontario-based company's technology independence,” Reuters writes.
Still, “I can’t imagine [Heins will] be as stubborn if RIM’s performance doesn’t improve,” VentureBeat notes. That said, what would Microsoft want with RIM’s business?
For one, “Microsoft could use RIM's deep carrier relationships to break free of a dependence on OEMs, and could mate RIM's enterprise infrastructure with its own, finally merging BlackBerry Server and Exchange the way IT managers have dreamed of doing for years,” PCMag suggests. “Of course, Microsoft may also be saving up to buy Nokia.”
Bigger picture, as The Verge lays it out, there’s a “lot of rumor and innuendo to keep track of, so the short version is this: RIM is likely considering several very dire solutions to what is obviously a very dire situation.”