Blackberry Dropped by US Federal Agency in Favor of iPhone

Research In Motion Ltd absorbed another huge blow after US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) announced that they will end their partnership with RIM in favor of Apple’s iPhone.

The Federal Agency, who partnered with RIM for the past eight years, said that the change is inevitable since Blackberry can no longer meet the mobile technology needs of their agency despite RIM’s claim of releasing a highly-improved device soon.

According to the agency, after analyzing Apple’s iOS-based device, they’ve found out that iPhone is more capable giving them the best possible technology because of its superb hardware platform and operating system. ICE is now finalizing the details of the purchase of iPhones for their more than 17,600 employees – a deal that could be worth more than $2.1 million.

The agency said: “The iPhone will be used by variety of agency personnel, including, but not limited to, Homeland Security Investigations, Enforcement and Removal Operations and Office of the Principal Legal Advisor employees. The iPhone services will allow these individuals to leverage reliable, mobile technology on a secure and manageable platform in furtherance of the agency’s mission.”

RIM, who is looking to put a solution for their continuous decline with the release of the BB10 that will feature a revamped operating system, was disappointed with the ICE’s decision. According to the company, the new device that is expected to be released in the first quarter of 2013 will be tailor-made for their government customers.

RIM vice president of government solutions said: “Of course, we are disappointed by this decision. We are working hard to make our new mobile computing platform, BlackBerry 10, meets the future needs of government customers.”

Last week, Booz Allen Hamilton consulting firm also decided to drop their contact with RIM and revealed plan to purchase iPhones and android smartphones for their more than 25,000 staffs.

Despite the excellent security offered by Blackberry devices, Charter Equity Research analyst Ed Snyder believes that more companies will follow suit, saying: “You’re going to see this happen more and more. They still have excellent security, but if your handsets are a brick that no one wants to use it’s going to drag down your business.”

[Source: Reuters]