No, I did not confuse RIM with Apple. After many years of a successful partnership between Apple and U2, U2 and RIM were able to agree to a partnership.
As you may remember, U2 helped launch a few iPods, such as the red ones for AIDS awareness in Africa, but they will be most remembered for their special edition iPods. For U2’s 360 Tour, Research In Motion and their lineup of BlackBerry smartphones are going to be the major sponsor of the tour. U2 is a very famous alternative rock band, and naturally, RIM is hoping their phones become more popular. Manager of U2, Paul McGuinness, hopes that their partnership “leads to new and innovative ways to enhance the mobile music experience on the BlackBerry platform for U2 fans.”
Now, the tour consists of visiting 14 European cities, and starting off in North America by playing at Soldier Field, which is home to the Chicago Bears. U2 didn’t really specify why they “broke up” with Apple, but it says something about U2. They obviously want to partner with a company who has products they like. Maybe U2 got tired of the Apple products, and wanted to go with RIM’s BlackBerry’s. Also, Steve Jobs is out of the picture until at least June, so maybe U2 feels safer about partnering with RIM.
Whether RIM announces any special BlackBerry phones for U2, like Apple did with the iPod, will remain to be seen.