Thursday, February 09, 2006

Mobile Enterprise Weblog: BlackBerry Work-around: Too Little, Too Late For IT Departments

Since today seems to be mobile enterprise day on the news front, I wanted to point out another excellent in-depth analysis by ex-Aberdeen analyst Dan Taylor at the Mobile Enterprise Weblog about the on-going Balackberry saga. Taylor writes that early this morning, Research in Motion (RIM) "issued a press release describing - in broad strokes - the work-around that the company has claimed to have for some months now."

Taylor then astutely points out that:

I have no idea why RIM has waited several months to issue this press release. And I have no idea why they'd bury the release on a Thursday. Actually, I do. It's past deadline for most weeklies, so this story will fester over the weekend and won't get any in-depth coverage until sometime next week. But next week is a major industry trade show: 3GSM 2006, so RIM is hoping to slide this one by, only getting positive press.
More importantly, Taylor feels this announcement:
is an insult to virtually every BES administrator in the United States. Every bit of RIM's PR is focused on preserving service for vocal "users," but the timetable here is impractical...if not impossible for most IT organizations. On one hand, RIM is pandering to BlackBerry users while demonstrating a lack of respect for the IT departments that select, deploy, administer, manage and pay for BlackBerry.
In a nutshell (read the post for more of the details), here is what he advises/proposes to enterprise IT departments:
  • Spend the next week or two waiting to get a legal opinion from corporate.
  • Sit on your hands and wait for RIM to release the technical details of this work-around.
  • Wait two weeks for the ruling on the injunction, and
  • If the injunction happens, scramble in less than 30 days to test, certify and install the work-around, which may or may not put your company in contempt of court, and...see what happens.
It's obvious Taylor is not too happy with the RIM folks north of the border. He concludes:
And while you're sitting on your hands waiting for the lawyers, RIM will be throwing a big party in Barcelona. Sounds like a raw deal to me.
At this point in time, every enterprise customer of RIM should be asking themselves, "why am I letting my vendor put me through this crap?" And if they are smart, they should be thinking, "I have much better things to do to spin my cycles, such as finding ways to improve the business."