In an interview with Bloomberg, BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins made some comments that have much of the tech industry scratching their collective heads. Despite skyrocketing sales for the devices, Heins predicted that tablets will be non-existent within five years.
Bloomberg's Hugo Miller and Nadja Brandt reported, "BlackBerry (BBRY) Chief Executive Officer Thorsten Heins said he sees a limited future for tablet computers, an indication he may shelve plans to build a follow- up to the smartphone maker’s ill-fated PlayBook device. 'In five years I don’t think there’ll be a reason to have a tablet anymore,' Heins said in an interview yesterday at the Milken Institute conference in Los Angeles. 'Maybe a big screen in your workspace, but not a tablet as such. Tablets themselves are not a good business model.'"
The Washington Post's Hayley Tsukayama added, "Heins said smartphones will become users’ main source of computing power in the next five years. People will simply plug whatever display, keyboard or other accessory they need to do their work into a smartphone. For many workers, a smartphone will be the only device they need, he said."
The Guardian also quoted Heins, who said, "In five years, I see BlackBerry [being] the absolute leader in mobile computing – that's what we're aiming. I want to gain as much market share as I can, but not by being a copycat."
PCWorld's Jared Newman commented, "Heins comments seem hard to believe at first. Tablet sales have been skyrocketing, as households phase out aging laptops and replace them with cheap media consumption devices. This trend shows no sign of slowing down. But a broader look at Heins' past remarks shows a vision that actually isn't so radical. Essentially, he believes that the smartphone will be the center of your computing universe, and provide the processing muscle and data for a vast array of smart displays."