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BlackBerry survival to depend on consumer appeal

08 Feb 2013
BlackBerry 10 at BlackBerry Jam Americas 2012

BlackBerry may have a compelling offering for the corporate market with its new platform, but it needs to appeal to consumers to stand any chance of reversing its fortunes, according to V3 reader reaction.

With the BlackBerry 10 launch and availability of the BlackBerry Z10 handset at the end of January, our most recent poll asked readers if the platform was enough to turn around the fortunes of the firm formally known as Research in Motion.

The overwhelming majority verdict - accounting for 83 percent of responses - is that BlackBerry will only succeed if it manages to win over consumers, as its traditional enterprise customer base has already been eroded too much.

This would make sense if the so-called bring your own device (BYOD) trend is a reality, and IT departments are finding they have to accommodate users bringing all kinds of smartphones into the company, from iPhones to Windows Phones to Android kit.

Although BlackBerry has a good reputation among enterprise users, BYOD proponents claim that success will depend upon the whims of the actual users themselves as to which device they prefer to access corporate resources such as email.

Fortunately for the firm, the next highest response from V3 readers indicated that many people still believe BlackBerry is the best mobile platform for the enterprise, based on features such as BlackBerry Balance, which partitions the device into separately managed work and personal environments.

However, at eight percent of overall responses, this was only just ahead of those who believe that Apple and Android devices are too entrenched now in the market, while those who responded that Windows Phone 8 is better for business accounted for just three percent of V3 readers.

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Daniel Robinson

Daniel Robinson is technology editor at V3, and has been working as a technology journalist for over two decades. Dan has served on a number of publications including PC Direct and enterprise news publication IT Week. Areas of coverage include desktops, laptops, smartphones, enterprise mobility, storage, networks, servers, microprocessors, virtualisation and cloud computing.

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