Research in Motion, in an apparent attempt to get more into the cloud-based business, has purchased NewBay for a reported $100 million. AllThingsD.com reports that RIM, makers of the Blackberry smartphone and Playbook tablet, would not comment on why they purchased NewBay, which was formed in 2002. The company has developed a mobile software service that allows users to share photos, videos and more in a cloud-based service. According to the Irish Times web site, RIM intends to keep all of NewBay's employees which number around 200 team members.
RIM might be wanting to offer its Blackberry customers a way to store such content and data on a cloud service in the future. The article points out that NewBay's own LifeCache software is already being used by a variety of wireless phone carriers around the world. If that is indeed RIM's plan it will have to compete with other products such as Amazon's own cloud services, which will be used on its upcoming Kindle Fire tablet, and Apple, which will officially launch its iCloud service for iOS users later this week.
But is RIM too late to the cloud server party? RBC analyst Mike Abramsky has some concerns. He is quoted as saying, "RIM is coming later to market than competitive offerings (may take another 6-12 months to be fully integrated) vs. Apple’s iCloud, Amazon’s Cloud Drive and related services, and Google cloud apps. It’s not known yet whether RIM’s offering will match or lag the content and user experience of competitors."