In August 2013, John Marshall, CEO of AirWatch had said that BlackBerry made a big mistake when it forced enterprises to buy its MDM platform to support BB 10 devices. But over the last 12 months, the situation has changed considerably.
Last May, BlackBerry announced that they were eager to become a more open system that would allow other Mobile Device Management (MDM) companies including AirWatch to manage their BB 10 devices directly. This is a clear indication that BlackBerry has started listening to their customers and offering them what they need in order to be successful.
BlackBerry possesses excellent multi-platform capabilities that allow it to securely manage devices running Android, iOS and BlackBerry 10 devices. And when BES 12 launches, Windows Phone devices too will be supported. BlackBerry’s Secure Work Space solution for Android and iOS allows businesses to securely manage their iOS and Android phones through app wrapping, containerization, and secure connectivity features. This allows users in the COPE and BYOD environments to choose whichever device they want and still benefit from the secure work environment provided by BlackBerry.
Meanwhile, BlackBerry continues to win clients back from its competitors. As of this September, over 840,000 of the 3.4 million licenses issued through BlackBerry’s EZ Pass program came from competitors like Good Technology, AirWatch and MobileIron.
If Android and iOS devices are hugely popular that is because of the availability of a large number of third party apps for them. BlackBerry doesn’t have that many apps. But the company has addressed that issue to a great extent by partnering with Amazon. BlackBerry’s recent agreement with Amazon brings Amazon’s Appstore to BB 10 devices. All devices that run BB 10 OS version 10.3 will have the Amazon Appstore installed on them. These include the BlackBerry P’9983 and the BlackBerry Passport. The Amazon Appstore will be accessible to existing BlackBerry users when they get BlackBerry 10 OS version 10.3.1. This gives BlackBerry 10 users access to two appstores. They can get productivity apps from BlackBerry World and from the Amazon Appstore they can download games and other popular apps.
Ever since John Chen took over as CEO BlackBerry has undergone a tremendous transformation. Under his able leadership BlackBerry has started focusing on its strengths in security and enterprise and created a business unit called BlackBerry Technology Solutions. BlackBerry has remained 100 percent focused on the needs of its customers. That is why customers received the BlackBerry Passport with open arms. The device was outsold within hours of its launch. It is aimed at enterprise users who need a smartphone that will enhance their productivity.
The upcoming launch of the BlackBerry Classic and BES12 and the recent launch of eBBM Suite also show BlackBerry’s commitment to offer the best products and services to their customers. It is no surprise then that BlackBerry is still the number one provider of secure enterprise mobility programs for its customers. AirWatch probably had no idea where BlackBerry was heading a year ago. The enterprise mobility sector has changed rapidly and BlackBerry has evolved with it.