Blackberry is no longer the force it used to be in the mobile world – you know it, I know it, Blackberry knows it. With Blackberry’s recent release of their new BB10 devices they hope to change all that and become player number 3 in the mobile world. Sure, they released some nice looking handsets and what looks to be a pretty capable operating system; but is that enough? I don’t really think it is. The 3rd place will be going to Microsoft, simply because they have more money to throw at their mobile operating system and keep it going and going, plus their desktop operating system is currently on 91% of the worlds computers which integrates so damn well with it.
With Blackberry 10, Blackberry started to move away from what made it so popular – its business features. No longer is the focus on Blackberry Messenger (BBM) or Blackberry Enterprise, it’s making sure Angry Birds and Cut the Rope are there, making sure people can post pictures of their food and cat to the internet. This is all so wrong. Blackberry needs to get back to its business centric model of smartphones. Many people I know have more than 1 phone; their personal phone and their work phone. Blackberry can’t come storming in 3 years late and expect to claim ground from very established personal phone operating systems. No, they must come in and regain the territory which made them so popular in the first place – the work phone.
Blackberry needs to focus on their BBM app and Blackberry Enterprise, and not just on Blackberry 10, they need it on Android, on iPhone and even as a Windows 8 app. It already has started to with Blackberry Enterprise with its support for most smartphone operating systems which is a great start, something they need to follow up with BBM. There are a few apps similar to BBM on the market already, like WhatsApp for example, but these apps don’t offer the enterprise features that big business’ need.
With BBM, business’ have the opportunity to send encrypted messages and make voice calls to international partners over the internet, individually or in a conference call. They could have a desktop application where clients send encrypted instant messages that sync with your smart phone for those quick, instant questions and answers. It could become the all-in-one business tool that any serious business has to share information, talk and organise all in an encrypted manner.
Their desktop program would include messaging integration, phone call integration and calendar syncing. Working in a business environment myself, I have noticed how sometimes I tend to use email as an instant messaging way to get responses back from other people. But it isn’t as efficient as it needs to be, a BBM program would fix that and installed on everyone’s computer in the office would allow me to quickly get my question answered or problem solved without having to pick up a phone or wait for an email response whether the person is sitting at their desk or not.
People aren’t going to jump ships completely from iOS or Android to BB10 for that one feature. But if Blackberry released it on all platforms they could see their company turn profitable again, and as business’ rely more and more on Blackberry Messenger and Enterprise they could slowly move back to BB10 devices for their employees. This is the tactic that Blackberry needs to take, not one where they try and beat iOS and Android at their own game – they need to go back to their strengths and do what they do best, and that’s business.