RIM Pitches BlackBerry 10 Deal to Businesses

Published on December 6, 2012
by John Paczkowski

With the launch of its BlackBerry 10 platform fast approaching, Research In Motion has begun a full court press to spur adoption in a stronghold it’s now losing to Apple and Google: Enterprise.

The company on Thursday announced BlackBerry 10 Ready, a new program intended to woo business customers to its new platform. Enrollment gets participants online training, a free BlackBerry 10 smartphone and the opportunity to trade up their BlackBerry Enterprise Server licenses.

That last offering is an important one, allowing companies transitioning to RIM’s new platform to swap their existing BES licenses for new BES 10 licenses at no cost on a one-for-one basis. BES licenses aren’t cheap. So RIM’s offer of a free upgrade will likely appeal to some — particularly corporate holdouts that still subscribe to the “you will use a BlackBerry and that’s an order” view of employee empowerment.

But these days, such firms are becoming fewer and fewer. As we’ve noted here before, the “bring your own device” era has given Android and iPhone serious traction in the enterprise market that RIM once dominated. And while promotions like BlackBerry 10 Ready will certainly garner interest, how much can they actually reverse a trend as seemingly powerful as the consumerization of IT?

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