BlackBerry restructuring: New roll outs help company spring back

By : |June 9, 2014 0

BANGALORE, INDIA: Canadian mobile phone manufacturer, BlackBerry, which is on cross-roads following declining market share, is playing a new ball game with a revamped strategy. The company has rolled out its popular messenger service on multiple platforms. It has embarked on a new road map to woo enterprise customers and prospective mobile customers.

In an interaction with CIOL, Manoj Khilnani, country marketing head-Enterprise, BlackBerry India dwells on the BlackBerry’s new plan for the India market and forthcoming launches. Excerpts:

CIOL: What is BlackBerry’s enterprise road-map for India?

                                 

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Manoj Khilnani: Couple of months back, we have reorganized ourselves. Primarily, we were known as a devices and a software company. Now, we have re-organized our strategy into four pillars, namely i.e. Devices, Software, BBM and QNX.

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Our focus is equally split among the four pillars as we look forward to operate in all segments. We announced that we will be coming out with two devices this year, Z3 and Q20. We have recently launched the Z3 in Indonesia. These are two announcements that were made around MWC. The other device is Classic Q20, which we plan to launch sometime later this year.

On the software front, we have BES5 and BES10, which were launched last year along with BlackBerry 10. We will be soon launching BES12 this year. BES10 is not just an MDM solution, but an Enterprise Mobility Management solution.

We have a 60-day trial period, which is available for customers. BES10 has witnessed a remarkable response from the market both globally and in India. Our worldwide implementations have increased from 12,000 in May 2013 to 25,000 in September 2013 to over 30

,000 implementations till date. India has also received a phenomenal response as there have been over 1,000 implementations of BES10 in India since January 2013.

Today, BES10 supports close to 15,000 devices through a single server. We have recently unveiled our plans to launch BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 (BES12). BES12 is a new enterprise mobility solution that is application-enabled and unifies BES10 and BES5 to one platform. This program will also provide free migration to BES10, while a new pricing structure enables customers to simplify their enterprise mobility management (EMM) environment to a single trusted provider. We are scheduled to launch it by this year end.

CIOL: BlackBerry launched BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) for Android and iOS in 2013. How do you seen the market response?

MK: BBM continues to evolve as a social mobile platform for consumers as well as for business customers through innovative features offering simplified ways to connect and share with others. With the launch of BBM [image_library_tag 181/98181, style=”float: left;” alt=”bbm1″ ,default]for Android and iOS users in October (2013), we are constantly working towards providing improved user experience by consistently trying to bring new feature updates to make the experience more engaging. BBM for Android and iPhone is an amazing success. Within few months of launching

BBM cross platform, BlackBerry had 50 million new Android and iOS users.

Today, the total BBM base compromises of 113 million globally. BBM comes with BBM Voice and Video features, which works on Wi-Fi, and is more economical and more sought after choice for someone who is always on the move. Our effort is to make BBM into a single service through which a user can access multiple information. We launched BBM Channels in February 2014, which is a 100 percent mobile only social platform.

QNX – This is relatively new in India, but we are already seeing a lot of interest and a lot of traction for QNX in the India market, particularly from sectors like healthcare and automobiles. QNX, which specializes in embedded systems, is a very stable platform that successfully operates in complex environments, and mi

ssion critical processes and applications. It offers stability and security, which is very essential whether you are running a car or even holding a mobile and this is what is differentiating QNX in the market today.

Today, QNX is already deployed in a lot of automobile companies worldwide. It is deployed in CISCO routers; it is deployed in medical equipments, in some of the heavy engineering and industrial automation companies. With QNX, we feel we have a clear edge in the market and this fourth pillar will drive our services and software revenue.

CIOL: Given the large enterprise customer following, what are priorities of the company on the applications front?

MK: Indian enterprises are now focused on having applications that are exclusively based on their requirements and custom coded resulting in increased work efficiency of employees. With this increased focus of enterprises on the application eco-system, we have been deploying customized enterprise applications for our clients based on their individual requirements, developed by our eco-system of over 43,000 developers in India. At the same time, we will see enterprises adopting and securing the most popular productivity apps for internal use. We have recently deployed some enterprise apps, which are useful in terms of CRM, field force automation etc., through our ISP partners.

The BlackBerry 10 platform has empowered global businesses to embrace enterprise applications that enhance productivity, increase collaboration and connect their mobile employees with the important resources they need on the move while providing highest levels of security and reliability.

On the consumer side, we have currently more than 500,000 apps which can readily be used from BlackBerry World.

CIOL: What is BlackBerry doing to keep the platform lucrative enough for developers?

MK: Every app that comes to BlackBerry World is checked before launch. Another important factor for developers is that they make maximum revenue as a lot of customers buy applications from BlackBerry World as they see value in the applications. It has been consistent and will continue to be so. With the launch of BB10.2.1, things have become better. If we have an application on some other platform, it is easy to convert them onto BB10 platform. This enhances user experience and users don’t mind paying a premium amount for that.

CIOL: What are the key features that that have been incorporated for enterprise users with the BES10 and BES12 offerings?

MK: BlackBerry Enterprise Service (BES) has been the cornerstone of secure enterprise communications in the past and continues to be so even now. BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 enables enterprises to manage complex fleets of mobile devices. The most significant feature about BlackBerry Enterprise Service10 is that it is the only device management solution that fully manages BlackBerry OS and BlackBerry10 devices along with Android and iOS smartphones and tablets, which makes it different from BES5. BES10 offers the only true end-to-end security solution at the device, server, and network level.

BlackBerry 10 offers very strong and compelling features, especially when it comes to data security and flexibility to meet different working needs. With features like BlackBerry Balance technology, one can keep corporate information separate and secure from personal content.

With Secure Work Space, managed applications are secured and separated from personal apps and data, providing an integrated email, calendar, contacts, app, an enterprise-level secure browser and secure attachment viewing and editing with Documents To Go. User authentication is required to access these secure apps and work data cannot be shared outside the secure Work Space.

The BES12 is a new enterprise mobility solution that is application-enabled and unifies BES10 and BES5 to one platform. This program will enable organizations to develop enterprise-grade applications that are quickly deployed to BlackBerry smartphones and other mobile devices.

The flexibility and scalability of the new BES12 architecture will also provide customers with the ability to move securely from on-premise to the cloud effortlessly and securely.

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