World Economic Forum Special Report

RIM CEO: We'll Do a ‘Muhammad Ali Thing in Round 8'

Thorsten Heins
Source: Research in Motion

Research In Motion CEO Thorsten Heins defended the future of his company just ahead of the launch of the new BlackBerry 10 operating system and handsets, saying he expects his critics to back down as the group re-establishes itself.

"I'm very confident that we will do the Muhammad Ali thing in round 8…Wednesday is round 8," he said, referring to the launch of the company's Blackberry 10 operating system on Jan. 30. Ali won a historic boxing event by knocking his challenger out in the eighth round.

RIM has lost markets share to Apple and Samsung in recent years, with even business customers – once the group's core client base – turning their backs on the company. Heins, who took over a year ago, said the company has learnt from its mistakes.

"Innovation moves so fast that you cannot get into 'innovator's dilemma' and that is what happened to us a little bit. We had a huge recipe for success in enterprises, and technology moves on, it moves on faster and faster," he said at a CNBC-moderated debate at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Thorsten Heins
Source: Research in Motion

"Never ever cook a dinner with the same recipe again. You always have to add something new and I think that's the key learning that we have from our history," Heins said.

He said the group decided to build a new platform that was ready for more mobile computing.

"This industry is not at the end of its growth, it's actually entering a whole new phase. If we move from mobile communication to mobile computing, that will enable so many new businesses, so many new different ways of how to work and interact…That's a whole new industry wave," he said. "At the end we will be a leader in driving this market towards mobile computing."

Apps, he said, were "stuff from yesterday". Apple has dominated the apps market in recent years.

"Apps is today, mobile computing and services that really enhance your life…that's the future."