A few years ago if you were asked what the main smartphone option was, most people would answer BlackBerry without so much as a second thought. Even when Apple introduced the iPhone, Research In Motion (RIM) – the creator of the BlackBerry – didn't worry. However, as the iPhone has continued to innovate and define the market, BlackBerry has been playing much more catch-up than it would like.
Even with the announcement that the BlackBerry 10 operating systems finally has a release date of early next year, there are more negative headlines that RIM needs to deal with. It was reported last month that many government agencies – who have predominantly been BlackBerry users – have been given permission to switch to iPhones if they so desire.
Since that time, nearly 17,600 employees with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) department have dropped BlackBerry for Apple's popular smartphone, though the reasons behind the switch were not made public.
In a recently submitted procurement document from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSF), the department is also seeking to switch, however, not only are the reasons known, but they do not put BlackBerry in a good light. According to the report, the department felt the old devices were unreliable and failed at an unacceptable rate and at inopportune times.
"The NTSB requires effective, reliable and stable communication capabilities to carry-out its primary investigative mission and to ensure employee safety in remote locations," the procurement document added.
The NTSB is a small organization of around 400 employees and the document states they lack the resources to manage a system with unreliable devices. This strategy is also being used by by countless small and midsized businesses around the country to decide which mobile option they want to deploy.
IT consulting firms have been called upon by many IT executives to aid in the decision making process.
Even with the announcement that the BlackBerry 10 operating systems finally has a release date of early next year, there are more negative headlines that RIM needs to deal with.