With everyone freaking out over the banning of blackeberrys (BB) in the UAE. Let me just throw a few facts and figures out there. Total Mideast figures for BB number less than 3 million off the top of my head. UAE and Saudi (the two GCC states planning on banning the BB) estimates are at 1.2 million users... Total worldwide usage? Somewhere in the region of 46 million users. In terms of smartphone operating systems, Google Android is the fastest growing as of late , Iphone IOS has a bigger slice the pie, whereas BB OS has the biggest chunk of the pie. Period.
So lets be clear that banning the BB is detrimental, as it denies access to a mature technology.
The thing is the UAE has one of the highest penetration rates of BB at 11% of total usage, with 500,000 units shipped here last year (off the top of my head again)
1.2 million handsets isnt a drop in the bucket for RIM, the manufacturer of the BB, and isnt something to be scoffed at by etisalat, where 11% of a market is a lot of money for what is essentially a monopoly.
The future will depend on who will hold out more?...
My fears aren't over your standard teenage, tween, or social freakonature with a BB. Im more worried about the impact on business standards. To remove the BB is to remove a business tool, as the the very structure of the BB lends itself well to business emails. Anyone who has used both will know what I am talking about. The standard business smartphone around the world is the BB, and what the TRA is doing is taking business back one tiny step backwards.
Lets make no bones about it, even if you argue alternatives are in place; the standard is being denied.
Hell, I didnt even like the BB.