updated 04:10 pm EDT, Thu March 14, 2013
Move expected to boost faltering BlackBerry services revenue
According to BlackBerry, the company is planning on offering a solution to secure and divide work and personal data on both iOS-powered devices, as well as tablets and smartphones running Android. The offering could help BlackBerry recover from the last few years of plummeting sales, and supplement the income from its new BlackBerry 10 platform and pair of new smartphones. The product is expected to be available before the end of June, and will be governed by the BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 package.
The infrastructure provided by BlackBerry would reduce the need for Virtual Private Network installations, to allow workers' devices to access the serveices it needs while within the corporate firewall. "Secure Work Space also offers the same end-to-end encryption for data in transit as we have offered on BlackBerry for many years, so there is no need for a VPN," head of enterprise software for BlackBerry Peter Devenyi, said in an interview.
BlackBerry says the new feature contains corporate calendar, contacts, document editing, email, memos, tasks, and web browsing, and maintains separation of the data from the worker's personal apps and content. Malware is less common on the iOS than it is on Android, but the loss of a device is still a possibility, and the Enterprise Service 10 has a more robust solution for dealing with device loss than Samsung SAFE or the iOS maintains.
Jefferies analyst Peter Misek said he expects wide adoption of BlackBerry's software in 2013, with a significant impact on the company's finances in 2014. "Supporting devices with the best, most secure, and easiest-to-use mobile solution should enable RIM to transform into what we believe is an attractive model," he said in a note to clients.