BlackBerry Fumes After T-Mobile Ad Offers iPhone Upgrade "For BlackBerry Customers"
Admit it — you thought things couldn't get any worse for BlackBerry. Well, it's happened: After a horrifying downturn that saw BlackBerry sales plummet and billions of dollars in net losses, a new T-Mobile ad offered a free upgrade to the iPhone. "Great for BlackBerry Customers," declared the ad, in the world's least subtle jab at the ailing BlackBerry Inc.
Understandably, BlackBerry wasn't pleased. In a blog post on the company website, the company's brand-new chief executive, John Chen, wrote: "T-Mobile did not speak with us before or after they launched this clearly inappropriate and ill-conceived marketing promotion. To the BlackBerry user community, I want to extend our deepest gratitude. Your passion motivates us every day as we navigate our turnaround."
Chen is referring to the outpouring of anger aimed at T-Mobile from BlackBerry users who saw the ad campaign. A petition on Charge.org implores T-Mobile to support BlackBerry's long-awaited new phone model, the Z30. "This petition is important for T-Mobile customers because the BlackBerry Z30 can bring a very exciting experience to those who haven’t tried it yet," writes the "Support The BlackBerry Z30" petition. So far, it has just under 1,000 signatures.
T-Mobile has apologized, stating that it's happy to work with BlackBerry and offering free shipping of BlackBerry devices to T-Mobile customers who order them. (If they exist, that is.)
BlackBerry has suffered a catastrophic financial downfall from its heyday, and only President Obama uses one these days.
And that's for security reasons, not stylistic ones. Don't believe us? Take this excerpt from the New York Times’ feature: “Quick! Hide the BlackBerry”:
Rachel Crosby speaks about her BlackBerry phone the way someone might speak of an embarrassing relative. “I’m ashamed of it,” said Ms. Crosby, a Los Angeles sales representative who said she had stopped pulling out her BlackBerry at cocktail parties and conferences. In meetings, she says she hides her BlackBerry beneath her iPad for fear clients will see it and judge her.
Let's just say, we can see what those T-Mobile ad execs were thinking...