Analyst: RIM Losing Market Share Faster Than Expected

— October 24, 2011

Recently released primary research from analyst firm Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) reveals that more than 30% of BlackBerry users in large enterprises (those with greater than 10,000 employees) expect to migrate to a different platform within the next year. This represents a significant reduction from the platforms current domination of the large enterprise market space, with 52% of mobile device users in that demographic actively using a BlackBerry as part of their job function.
Research in Motion (RIM) ushered in the first broad enterprise adoption of mobile devices with the introduction of the BlackBerry handheld in 2003. The mobile devices quickly gained popularity for their ability to deliver e-mail and other messaging capabilities to employees, replacing antiquated pager systems.
To enable email delivery and other device management functionality, RIM delivered the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES). With broad investment in both the BlackBerry devices and the BES management platform among particularly large businesses, RIM rapidly grew to become the dominant player in enterprise mobile device management.
The entire industry, however, was turned on its head when Apple introduced the first iPhone in 2007. Since then, the proliferation of iPhones and Android smartphones has slowly been chipping away at BlackBerry’s dominance of the enterprise space. Now it appears that RIM’s market share loss is accelerating.
“We expected to see some market share loss by RIM, but these results were far more dramatic than we could have anticipated,” reports Steve Brasen, EMA managing research director. “Both enterprises and employees indicated they were broadly abandoning BlackBerry devices for primarily Android and iOS platforms – and this data was collected before the recent BlackBerry service failures, which can be expected to even further accelerate migration.”
According to EMA’s research results, the reason for the mass abandonment of BlackBerry devices is primarily due to a lack of user satisfaction. If fact, only 16% of respondents to EMA’s survey indicated they were completely satisfied with their BlackBerry smartphone versus 44% of iPhone users. Increasingly, employees are utilizing their own mobile devices for business purposes, so end-user satisfaction is proportionally growing as a critical adoption consideration.
Further details on mobile device platform adoption, usage, challenges, and management practices are available in the EMA publication, “Enterprise Mobile Device Management: How Smartphones and Tablets are Changing Workforce IT Requirements.” For the research, two separate surveys were performed – one focused on end users’ requirements and experiences, and the other was designed to report on how enterprise IT managers are supporting the devices. Combined together, the survey results provide a detailed cross-section of enterprise mobile device usage, trends, challenges and best practices across the entire range of business sizes and industry types.


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