BlackBerry India interview: New trends like COPE can fix some of BYOD issues

In an exclusive interaction with Infotech lead, Akash Mainra, business lead- Large Enterprise, BlackBerry India, said BYOD is inevitable for any enterprise regardless whether they are ready for it or not. The upcoming trend of COPE or Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled is gaining popularity in the BYOD world, and is able to fix some of the concerns related to BYOD, he added.

Mainra also said BlackBerry will soon launch a new multi-platform cloud enterprise mobility management solution which will enable businesses to easily secure and manage corporate and personal devices.

Highlights of the interaction follows:



What are the demands of enterprise CIOs?

The new age demand on enterprise CIOs is simple. Map IT to business in a manner where it is able to contribute to the bottom line and help grow revenues. What CIOs are therefore faced with is the task of increasing end-user productivity while reducing TCO. While BYOD has been touted as the ideal way to do this, the consequent set of challenges are great as well. Consumerization of IT brings with it the complexities of securing a varied set of devices, managing access controls to mission critical apps as well as compartmentalizing the corporate from the personal data and usage. That said, BYOD is today’s enterprise reality and has much to offer from a benefits standpoint if you have the right Enterprise Mobility Management systems in place.

Are Indian enterprises ready for BYOD? 

BYOD is a reality whether enterprises are ready for it or not. We’re in an era where rather than evade it, we have to embrace it by optimizing it for extreme productivity while securing it with enterprise grade policies and mobility management tools. That said, Indian enterprises have definitely come to terms with this reality. If BlackBerry is to consider just the sheer growth in implementation of our BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10  over 25,000 since its launch in January, then that is indication of enterprise readiness.

What are the latest BYOD trends?

Enterprise applications are clearly the next growth drivers for enterprise mobility. The growth of workplace mobility has increased the demand for business applications and thus provides great opportunity for enterprise developers. Gartner projects that by 2017, 25 percent of enterprises will have an enterprise app store for managing corporate-sanctioned apps on PCs and mobile devices. The BlackBerry 10 platform has empowered global businesses to embrace enterprise applications that enhance productivity, increase collaboration and connect their mobile employees with the important resources they need on the road while providing highest levels of security and reliability.

The upcoming trend of COPE or Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled is gaining popularity in the BYOD world. This new trend of COPE promises to fix some of the concerns related to BYOD. The COPE model offers businesses a new way of acknowledging and embracing consumerization by giving some control back to IT without depriving users of devices that make them more productive. COPE is a win-win situation for both employees and employers treading the fine balance between security and privacy concerns.

What is your focus right now?

BlackBerry’s enterprise services are its true legacy and that remains a key focus area for us going forward as well. We are one of the leading players in the enterprise mobility segment. If you look at the sheer adoption of BlackBerry, we currently continue to service about 90 percent of the Fortune 500 companies and 75 percent of ET 500 companies in India. Our clients are extremely happy with the newly launched BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 platform. BES10 represents a consolidation of BlackBerry’s enterprise mobility management (EMM) product portfolio, which includes Mobile Device Management (MDM), Mobile Application Management, and Security solutions leveraging the BlackBerry infrastructure. It is both an Enterprise- and BYOD-centric management system.

We will soon launch a new multi-platform cloud enterprise mobility management solution in India to enable businesses to easily secure and manage corporate and personal devices. The new cloud will help us reach out to the SMB market. We are also focused on expanding our channel and engaging in partnerships with mobile carriers.

What are your strategies to gain market share?

The Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) market in India is largely underpenetrated. With our renewed focus on software and solutions which helps manage even Android and iOS devices in addition to BlackBerry, our enterprise business is expected to continue its growth trajectory and make deep inroads into this market.

Being the leader in the enterprise mobility segment, we have implemented a two-pronged strategy i.e. from a solution as well as from a device perspective i.e. 1) the enterprise and 2) consumers. In India, we are aggressively targeting large, mid-level and small businesses alike. BlackBerry currently has some of the strongest and most robust enterprise services and solutions in the market having transitioned from the ‘push mail’ image. BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), BES Express, BES 10, BlackBerry Balance, Enterprise Instant Messaging (EIM)are some of our key services/solutions specifically designed for the enterprise segment. BlackBerry Balance allows IT heads to secure corporate information on personal devices by partitioning personal and corporate data. The solution allows BlackBerry smartphones and tablets to be used for business and personal purposes without compromising corporate security. It offers flexibility to the workforce while having complete control over business data and prevents any unauthorized sharing of vital business information externally.

BES10 has witnessed a remarkable response from the market both globally and in India. Our worldwide implementations have increased from 12,000in May 2013 to 25,000 in September 2013. There have been over 1,000 implementations of BES10 in India. We plan to target Indian SMBs in a big way with our upcoming cloud solutions as well.

What are your latest offerings?

We will be soon launching the new multi-platform cloud enterprise mobility management solution which will enable businesses to easily secure and manage corporate and personal devices. The cloud service will minimize the complexity of managing a fleet of disparate mobile devices, beneficial for IT departments that are strained in today’s business environment and essential for teams or businesses without an IT department.

Additionally, we have been consistently gaining enterprise customers in India through our new offerings of BES Express and BES10. BES Express has helped us gain a strong foothold in the SME and BYOD addressable space, since this is a zero cost license which helps the enterprise securely manage corporate data even on employee owned BlackBerry devices.

Lastly, we recently announced a limited period exclusive festive offer on BlackBerry 10 smartphones for our BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 (BES10) customers in India with a view to ensure that they are able to leverage the best of the BlackBerry 10 platform and smartphones for enterprise productivity. The offer witnessed a great response from our enterprise customers.

Rajani Baburajan

[email protected]