BlackBerry is enraged by a recommendation from a leading industry analyst firm that its enterprise customers start looking for alternatives. But can anyone really deny that that’s the right thing to do after everything that has happened?
The Canadian company has lurched from one disaster to the next, from the delay of its iOS and Android BBM apps, to laying off 4,500 of its global workforce, announcing a net operating loss of almost a billion dollars, and announcing that it has signed an intent to acquire deal with Farifax Financial Holdings. All signs are pointing to the demise of the company, thus Gartner, a respectable analyst firm, recommended that customers should start looking for a replacement over the next six months.
“Gartner recommends that our [BlackBerry enterprise] clients take no more than six months to consider and implement alternatives to BlackBerry,” said Gartner analyst Bill Menezes in an email interview with ComputerWorld.
“We’re emphasizing that all clients should immediately ensure they have backup mobile data management plans and are at least testing alternative devices to BlackBerry.”
The recommendation was based on a report written by Gartner analyst Ken Dulaney, after hearing concerns raised by BlackBerry clients regarding the series of unfortunate announcements.
Needless to say, BlackBerry was rather pissed off by the recommendation, and stated that Gartner’s conclusion was “purely speculative.”
“We recognize and respect external parties’ opinions on BlackBerry’s recent news. However, many of the conclusions by Gartner about the potential impact of a sale or other strategic alternatives, are purely speculative.
“BlackBerry is restructuring and pursuing strategic alternatives to increase its focus on its core enterprise business. We remain steadfast in our mission to deliver the most secure and powerful mobile management solutions and smartphones to our customers.
“That commitment has been met with support from enterprises adopting BlackBerry and BES 10, which has more than 25,000 commercial and test servers installed to date, up from 19,000 in July.
“BES 10 is also the only EMM [Enterprise Mobile Management] platform to be awarded ‘Authority to Operate’ on U.S. Department of Defense Networks. Everyone at BlackBerry is grateful for the ongoing support of our customers, and we are working harder than ever to keep it,” BlackBerry’s emailed statement to ComputerWorld read.
Last week, BlackBerry canceled its scheduled conference call wherein its financial report would be discussed. Instead, it released a written report which contained information as to why the company lost nearly $1 billion, the majority of which comes from a write-down of inventory of its new line of phones running the BlackBerry 10 operating system – which failed spectacularly to pique the interest of consumers.
In a delayed regulatory filing, which was supposed to be included in the financial results, BlackBerry revealed that its customers are already turning against it.
“The intense competition impacting the company’s financial and operational results that previously affected demand in the United States market is now being experienced globally,” BlackBerry said, “including in international markets where the company has historically experienced rapid growth.”
The regulatory filing stated that though many corporations downloaded its new, corporate server software, not many decided to purchase the software and related services after testing it.