...many benefits for business users.
While Graham Yellowley, technology lead equities at LCH.Clearnet, predicted the outage "can only accelerate the surge away from BlackBerrys to Android or iPhone technology", he also pointed out the limitations of rival offerings: "These other phones operate over public networks, do not have message recording/auditing as required by a number of countries and do not have the equivalent of the BlackBerry Enterprise Server, so it is not the end of RIM in the corporate world... just yet!"
Madhushan Gokool, IT manager at Storm Model Management, said: "Problems do happen, but the lack of communication from RIM was more of a problem, rather than the technical outage. However, BlackBerrys are still a great email/business device, and I don't think there will be masses of businesses who move onto alternatives as yet, due to the outage."
Laura Dawson, head of information services at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, said: "While BlackBerry is still a good email provider, smartphone technologies are taking the ground from under them, as are tablets, and the executive wants to be seen with the next 'must have'. No IT department wants the pain of supporting a variety of tools or even management of a variety of contracts."
Dawson added: "This recent outage has put the option to switch into the minds of both executives and internal IS providers. Whether this is the final nail, I would doubt, but it has firmly put the lid on the coffin if not completely sealed it."
With RIM rival Apple launching its latest handset - the iPhone 4S - this week, the outage has come at a difficult time for RIM which rapidly needs to regain momentum or risk being outpaced.
As Mike Tonkiss, IT director at Neopost, points out: "It could not have come at a worse time for the company trying to compete against the iPhone."
And Stephen Potter, CIO at World-Check, warned: "I see the long, slow decline many had predicted for RIM now accelerating."
Today's silicon.com CIO Jury:
- Rene Batsford, head of ICT, EAT
- Laura Dawson, head of information services, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
- Madhushan Gokool, IT manager, Storm Model Management
- Neil Jones, head of information services, Newport City Homes
- Richard Lovelock, head of IT, The Royal British Legion
- Hugo Patten, CIO, DHL Supply Chain
- Stephen Potter, CIO, World-Check
- Mike Roberts, IT director, The London Clinic
- Dave Thomson, IT and communications manager, Rice & Dore Associates
- Mike Tonkiss, IT director, Neopost
- Mike Wright, head of technology, Man Group
- Graham Yellowley, technology lead equities, LCH.Clearnet
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Steve Ranger is the UK editor of TechRepublic, and has been writing about the impact of technology on people, business and culture for more than a decade. Before joining TechRepublic he was the editor of silicon.com.