The Art of EMM

A popular refrain ringing through the enterprise mobility community is that IT departments must evolve their mobile management approaches from device centric to app centric. The reasoning is that while mobile devices enable users to do their jobs at any time or from any location, the apps running on those smartphones and tablets are the engines that propel end-user productivity.


Elevating the Argument 

While the logic is unquestionably sound, why not push it to the next level?

If employee productivity, which drives business productivity and profitability, is the ultimate aim of enterprise mobility, it only makes sense that the most efficient approach to EMM is one that’s focused on the end user. In the end, only a user-centric EMM strategy will deliver the flexibility and focus required to wring the maximum value out of the mobilization of businesses and organizations.

Here’s a few reasons why.

Workforce enablement, the prized objective of enterprise mobility, cannot be achieved with broad brushstrokes. Workforces of even mid-size organizations are marked by a diversity of roles.  Though it’s impractical to create separate profiles for each employee – especially in large organizations — an effective EMM solution is one that allows for the application of policies with a fine brush. IT administrators must have tools that give them the latitude to maximize the productivity of nearly all end users by matching them with the devices, apps and network access policies most suitable to their roles.

No Win Situation

A user-centric approach to EMM also makes sense because it’s aligned with the sensibilities of line of business (LOB) managers and, at some companies, even the CEO. Like it or not, as enterprise mobility increasingly impacts P&L, LOB leaders will have a greater say in shaping enterprise mobility strategy.  IT leaders who continue to operate as if their sole reason for being is to protect the network by restricting the number and diversity of devices and applications that access it will find themselves at odds with executive management. And given the bottom-line implications of workforce mobilization, it’s a battle that IT can no longer win.

It follows, then, that a potentially painful byproduct of a user-centric approach to EMM is a shift in mindset of the IT department. At some point, IT workers will have to accept the fact that their job descriptions have been rewritten. They need to remove the friction from their relationship with end users. Adopting a user-centric approach to EMM, where a job well done is measured by end-user productivity gains, is a huge step toward that goal.

Next-Gen Enterprise Mobility

A user-centric approach to IT is also more suited to the next step in the evolution of enterprise mobility. Enterprises are beginning to transition, say researchers at IDC, away from an enterprise mobility phase defined by the impact of consumerization. The massive influx of consumer-oriented devices and applications into the enterprise has forced IT departments into a mostly reactive posture, focused almost exclusively on managing devices. The next phase of enterprise mobility evolution, following IDC’s Mobility Maturity Model, will be focused on end-user productivity and driven by strategy, rather than reaction – the perfect prescription for a user-centric approach to EMM.

In the end, the recent uptake in calls for an application-focused approach to EMM is all well and good. With end-user productivity the principal objective of enterprise mobility, though, a user-centric approach will paint a much more compelling picture.

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Interview: The BlackBerry 10 Challenge with Jay Klein, CEO PUR Gum

Below is part of an ongoing feature series on Inside BlackBerry – Donny H.


What does it mean to be an entrepreneur? Granted, no two people will give the same answer, but everyone will agree: tenacity and drive are two major factors. However, aside from personality traits, it takes some exceptional organization and multi-tasking skills to ensure that parts keep moving; something BlackBerry 10, at its core, is built to do. So, for the first in our series of interviews, we caught up with Mr. Jay Klein, Founder and CEO of Toronto-based PÜR® Gum and asked a few questions about his career. Below he’ll touch on what has kept him such a loyal BlackBerry customer over the years, why he attributes his early success to his trusty BlackBerry 7290 smartphone, and of course, why he thinks that you must always crawl before you walk.


CH: Jay, thank you so much for taking the time to sit and talk to me!

JK: My pleasure!

CH: So, let’s get started: What is it about BlackBerry that keeps you as loyal? I understand that you’ve been on #TeamBlackBerry for a long time!

JK: Honestly, I am an ultra-loyal guy and BlackBerry was my first smartphone. I switched from a flip to a BlackBerry (the 7290) many years ago, upgraded several times as the device evolved, and never looked back. As an eager entrepreneur, having just graduated from school, I didn’t want to be tied to my desk; owning a BlackBerry solved that. It allowed me to take my business on the road. I attribute a large part of my early success on using a BlackBerry. I admit … at one point, I purchased another device during the BlackBerry transition time a few years ago. BlackBerry 10 hadn’t been released and I needed more from a phone at the time than my BlackBerry at the time could handle. And, no word of a lie, it was a huge learning curve. That phone, as great of a media and time consumption tool it was — was a big time waster in terms of productivity. It was hard to remain focused. I also missed the true communications experience that came with having a BlackBerry smartphone. To worry about constantly refreshing my inbox was getting taxing. It wasn’t long before I started to miss the keyboard on my BlackBerry. I could no-look type, longer, more thought out emails. On my other phone, not so much. It doesn’t provide nearly the same experience, for me.

CH: You’re a natural entrepreneur. You’ve tried and failed, but, unlike many, you’ve learned and let yourself (and products you’re building) benefit because of it. As the CEO of PUR Gum, and having your hands in other projects, you must be a natural multi-tasker….how does your BlackBerry allow you to be so productive?

JK: Now with hub and notification center it always brings forward the most relevant information. You can have fun with the device, but at its core, it’s built for business. BBM also makes global communication very easy as especially with overseas suppliers. PUR Gum is sold in over 25 countries and almost all over, I find, our suppliers are on BlackBerry. We all speak the same tech language. Further, push lets me know my suppliers are getting my emails, rather than waiting for refresh. And, of course, with the introduction of cross platform BBM, I have no boundaries for keeping in touch.

CH: You’ve likely more than doubled your staff in three years. Do you use BBM to communicate with them? If not, what other messenger service do you use?

JK: We definitely use BBM. As new staff comes on board, many with different devices, we generally adapt. Not everyone has an unlimited text plan, if they’re on BBM we can talk wherever, whenever… even over Wi-Fi®!

CH: PÜR Gum doesn’t have a BBM channel. If you created one today… what would you put as the subject headline for your first post?

JK: ‘Great taste runs with BlackBerry and pomegranate’. We need to always be where our audience is. Need to be aware, communicate and connect. We will be starting a BBM channel.

CH: You’ve successfully built a product from an idea to worldwide distribution in a few short years. If you could offer one small piece of advice to an aspiring entrepreneur reading this, what would it be and why?

JK: I advocate this to everyone: lay a very solid foundation early on. Think big and take it slowly. If you start to chase the finish, you’re going to hurt yourself. People only read headlines and see the money, but don’t know the work and effort that went into building it.

CH: Anything else you want to say to #TeamBlackBerry?

JK: Overall, I just love BlackBerry. Always available, battery great, speakerphone is great, solid feel and durable! Happy to promote the brand to anyone who will listen!

Corey Herscu is a paid contributor to Inside BlackBerry and has been compensated for his work on the program. BlackBerry provided participants with devices. The above does not reflect any affiliation between BlackBerry Ltd. and PÜR Gum

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Leading Canadian Organizations Invest in BlackBerry Enterprise Mobility Solutions


Ask any organization in the market for an enterprise mobility management (EMM) solution what their top requirements are and they’ll probably say security and productivity, but not at the cost of sacrificing innovation. For many Canadian firms such as the City of Waterloo; Samuel, Son & Co., Limited; and Volker Stevin, they  do not have to look far to achieve this goal. Today, these customers announced their deployment of BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 (BES10) and BlackBerry 10 smartphones.

City of Waterloo

cow_logo_4c_printIn BlackBerry’s hometown, the City of Waterloo continues to grow its pioneering spirit with the deployment of BES10 and BlackBerry 10 smartphones for its workforce. It has also collaborated with BlackBerry to develop Ping Street, a first-of-its-kind mobile application that provides Waterloo citizens real-time access to location-based information, and initiated the use of BBM™ Groups for emergency communications.

Samuel, Son & Co.

Transitioning to a new EMSAMUELM solution is a big decision for CIOs. At Samuel, Son & Co., Limited, Canada’s oldest and largest metals service center and metal manufacturing company, CIO Bob Carter had great confidence in BlackBerry as their core end-to-end business mobility solution.

“The powerful combination of BlackBerry 10 smartphones and BES10 offers us an integrated mobile device and server solution that meets our highest security and productivity needs.
BlackBerry also offers a best-in-class customer service experience and product training support, which makes deploying BlackBerry 10 a great value proposition overall.”

Volker Stevin

CustomerLogos_volkerstevinVolker Stevin, one of the largest heavy civil and highway maintenance contractors in Western Canada, evaluated other MDM solutions like MobileIron and AirWatch before opting for user-friendly and cost-effective, BES10.

“We have hundreds of employees on and off the field, and they all require one thing – fast, secure and consistent communication tools,” said Mike Philip, Wireless Program Manager, Volker Stevin.

These companies join diverse organizations from various industries across Canada who have ordered, downloaded or installed BES10 to date.  BES10 also offers organizations the ability to manage BlackBerry, iOS and Android devices from a single, highly secure, reliable platform.

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BlackBerry to release BBM patches to fix Heartbleed bug vulnerabilities

The Canadian smartphone maker said it would release the patches by Friday.
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Devices Business is an Important Part of Our End-to-End Strategy

John Chen clarifies a recent Reuters article and reiterates that BlackBerry is Not Leaving the Handset Market

John Chen

Yesterday, Reuters published an article that said I would consider selling our Devices business. My comments were taken out of context.

I want to assure you that I have no intention of selling off or abandoning this business any time soon.‎ I know you still love your BlackBerry devices. I love them too and I know they created the foundation of this company. Our focus today is on finding a way to make this business profitable.

BlackBerry is not a handset-only company. We offer an end-to-end solution and devices are an important part of that equation. That’s why we’re complementing our Devices business with other revenue streams from enterprise services and software, to messaging. We’re also investing in emerging solutions such as Machine to Machine technologies that will help to power the backbone of the Internet of Things.

We will do everything in our power to continue to rebuild this business and deliver devices with the iconic keyboard and other features that you have come to expect from this brand.‎

Rest assured, we continue to fight. We have not given up and we are not leaving the Devices business.

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BlackBerry may exit smartphone business if it doesn’t make money: CEO

"If I cannot make money on handsets, I will not be in the handset business," John Chen said in an interview on Wednesday.
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BlackBerry a good long-term investment, insists Fairfax’s Prem Watsa

Watsa said he still believes the company, which pioneered handheld email but has watched its market share disappear to rivals such as Apple Inc's iPhone, has valuable assets and is being underpriced by investors.
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A Fresh Look at Bring Your Own Device (BYOD): Part 2

This is the second part of a two-part blog examining the evolving nature of enterprise mobility and how recent advances are prompting enterprises and end users to consider complements or alternatives to BYOD. While Part I explored the topic from an IT perspective, Part II considers how the evolution of enterprise mobility is impacting end users.  


BYOD is largely a behavior-driven trend.  It came about when end-users were driven to utilize their own devices for work due to limitations on the personal use capabilities of corporate-issued devices, as well as privacy concerns. Those users who found corporate-issued smartphones or tablets satisfactory for their “off-duty” communications needs were often turned off by fear that personal information, such as photos and private email accounts, could be deleted or perused by the IT department or other entities within the organization.

For employees, especially those wanting a single device for work and personal activities, BYOD made great sense – even if it meant footing the bill for the smartphone and the accompanying service. But those conditions are so 2009! The modern day office worker is now met with a set of mobility options and conditions that are completely different from those faced by his or her counterpart of just a few years ago.

For starters, technology advances in the enterprise mobility management (EMM) space, specifically containerization, has largely solved employees’ privacy and data loss issues. Though not all EMMs are created equal, many offer application management capabilities that make it possible for IT to oversee (and wipe, if necessary) only work-related data, leaving the employee with complete reign over the remainder of the device. The BlackBerry Balance containerization solution has been recognized by industry analysts as offering market-leading work/personal management capabilities.

Enterprise IT departments have leveraged these capabilities to expand the flexibility of their device management policies, applying containerization and other modern EMM approaches to include personal communications and computing activities on corporate issued devices. (See the whitepaper Making the Case for COPE for a detailed discussion of corporate mobile device policies.) Despite the lingering and dated association of corporate-owned smartphones and tablets with business-only device policies, enterprises are now able to support a broad range of policies that span the entire lockdown-to-BYOD spectrum.

In fact, device ownership has largely been eliminated as a functional consideration. Corporate-owned policies, including COPE (Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled) and CYOD (Choose Your Own Device), now possess the flexibility to provide employees with essentially the same user experience, privacy and autonomy they are accustomed to on their own devices. Legal liability, accordingly, is now the major difference between corporate-issued and personal devices used in the workplace.

This reality radically changes the relationship between employees and their mobile devices, specifically the employee’s perceived need to own the device and incur monthly charges for voice and data. I don’t know about yours, but my inbox gives me access to newly commissioned BYOD surveys nearly every day. The preponderance of the data I’ve seen indicates that the major drivers behind BYOD are device preference and greater control of personal data. My guess is that if those requirements could be satisfied through a corporate-issued device policy, a large percentage of employees would be perfectly content to cede ownership rights to their employers.

The bottom line is that selecting an optimal device management policy is a complex undertaking for nearly any organization, which must consider a range of factors, including costs, security, legal risks and user satisfaction. But for a business that prefers to address the mobility requirements of at least a portion of its workforce with a corporate-owned approach — due to legal, regulatory or even expense considerations — fear of failing to meet the usability and productivity needs of most users is now a thing of the past.

And speaking of the past, isn’t it time for a fresh look at BYOD?


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New Dates: Introducing BlackBerry Experience events

We are pleased to announce ‘BlackBerry Experience’, a global series of Enterprise customer events designed for those who are responsible for defining and implementation their organizations’ mobile strategy.


What to expect at the BlackBerry Experience event:

We know your time is precious so we’ve kept each event to half a day. We kick off the day by sharing our BlackBerry vision and product strategy, You’ll hear insights from industry analysts about trends that are shaping the mobile world before taking a closer look at the solutions that will help you drive greater productivity and efficiency in your organization. Following the presentations you will have the opportunity to spend time networking with your peers.

Five reasons to attend BlackBerry Experience:

  1. Discover how BlackBerry is returning to its roots and refocusing on enterprise mobility.
  2. Learn about BlackBerry’s secure end-to-end enterprise solutions.
  3. Get an insider’s view of our roadmap to BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 (BES12).
  4. See how we’ve made it simpler and more cost effective than ever to choose BlackBerry for secure multi-platform Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM).
  5. Learn how we make it easy for you to develop cross-platform applications that will help transform your business processes.

Join us in a city near you:

  • Montreal, Canada – May 6th, 2014 – Register Now
  • Toronto, Canada – May 8th, 2014 – Register Now
  • Chicago, US – May 14th, 2014 – Registration Coming Soon
  • Cologne, Germany – May 14th, 2014 – Register Now
  • Washington DC, US – May 21st, 2014 – Registration Coming Soon
  • London, UK – June 3rd, 2014 – Registration Coming Soon

Reserve your spot, now!

We’re excited to share our vision for the future of mobility with our valued customers. Whether your mobile strategy supports BYOD, COPE or COBO, join us at one or our BlackBerry Experience events and we’ll show you exactly how BlackBerry can support the needs of your enterprise today and well into the future.

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BlackBerry Kopi budget QWERTY phone reportedly spotted with BlackBerry Q5

We first heard about the Kopi in September last year, when it was first shown in an alleged leaked image.
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