TIMELINE-From RIM to BlackBerry, a company in transition

Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:31am EST
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Jan 30 (Reuters) - Research In Motion Ltd has launched its new line of re-engineered BlackBerry smartphones, taking the wraps off the long-delayed devices at a series of events around the world on Wednesday.

The company used the occasion to announce that it was changing its name to BlackBerry, hoping a new brand identity will polish its tarnished image and help give it a fresh start.

The company, which has steadily lost ground in the hyper-competitive market to Apple Inc's iPhone and devices running Google Inc's Android operating system, is gambling its future on the BlackBerry 10. It sees the new line as make-or-break - its best hope for a comeback in an industry it once dominated.

Here are important milestones in the company's history:

February 1985 - Mike Lazaridis and Douglas Fregin co-found Research In Motion as an electronics and computer science business based in Waterloo, Ontario, the Canadian university city where Lazaridis studied.

1989 - RIM develops a network gateway later introduced as RIMGate, a predecessor to its BlackBerry Enterprise Server.

1992 - Jim Balsillie joins RIM as co-CEO, mortgaging his house and investing $250,000.

1994 - RIM launches a handheld point-of-sale card reader, which verifies debit and credit transactions directly to a bank.

1995 - RIM builds its own radio modem for wireless email.   Continued...