Consumers Drive Corporate Shift Away from RIM’s Blackberry

by Matt Klassen on October 15, 2010

There’s no question that companies around the world have relied on Research in Motion’s ultra secure Blackberry Enterprise Server for years to give them the corporate communication security they need. But as they say, ‘times are a changin,’ and suddenly it looks like RIM has a great deal of company in the enterprise market.

In fact, with the news that Apple’s iOS and Android are quickly becoming popular alternative IT solutions for large corporations its clear that more and more companies are willing to expand their options when it comes to enterprise mobility management solutions.

The problem, more and more companies are discovering, is that their employees don’t want to use a Blackberry for anything else, meaning that most people are forced to carry two devices, one for personal use and one for business use. Add to that the fact that both Apple and Google have made their respective operating systems more and more secure, and suddenly RIM’s iron grip on the corporate mobile communication market doesn’t seem so solid anymore.

Let’s be fair, despite the growth of the other mobile operating systems in the corporate sector the numbers don’t lie, Blackberry is still the undisputed king of the enterprise market. But being the undisputed king means that all your competitors will be gunning for your spot, and as those competitors advance on RIM’s Blackberry, the outcome does not look good.

What’s interesting about this shift from Blackberry to other mobile operating systems is that it really seems to be an employee driven initiative. As John Herrema, senior vice president of corporate strategy at enterprise class device management and mobile security company Good Technology states, “The choice of which mobile device to support in a company is no longer happening in the CIO’s office….It’s happening at a retail store one consumer at a time. It’s a big shift, and companies have to adapt.”

With more and more employees bringing their personal devices to work—and wanting to use them there—companies have been forced to expand their IT departments mobile focus, a shift that has allowed Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating systems to join the corporate party. In fact, over the past four months the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, and the iPad have been the leading devices activated for enterprise use.

So while corporations may want to hold on to Blackberry’s unrivalled standard of communications security, it looks like that may not be possible for long. Many companies who had formerly been Blackberry only businesses have been forced to examine the possibility of integrating both the iOS and Android into their technology plans, as CIOs across the country cope with the introduction of these consumer-oriented devices into the workplace.

But what does this all mean for RIM? It’s clear that RIM has built its empire on the backs of its corporate clients, offering them secure and reliable mobile communications solutions. However, RIM’s days of monopolizing the corporate sector are quickly coming to an end, as all of the Blackberry’s chief rivals are making inroads into the enterprise market. All RIM can do now is hope that companies hold off on transitioning away from Blackberry until their get their hands on the Playbook early next year.

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Written by: Matt Klassen. www.digitcom.ca >. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com > by: RSS >, Twitter >, Identi.ca >, or Friendfeed >

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