BlackBerry CEO knocks Samsung's enterprise plans, security: Fear or fact?

Summary:Samsung is going after Apple in the enterprise and when the marketing engine gets fired up BlackBerry is at risk of being forgotten.

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins knows where his company's bread is buttered---the enterprise---and he's not too keen to Samsung's encroachment amid the bring your own device trend.

In an interview with CNET's Roger Cheng, Heins made the following points as the BlackBerry Z10 launched in the U.S.:

  • Android is susceptible to attacks.
  • BlackBerry 10 was designed to be secure from the ground up. 
  • Samsung's efforts to secure Android with its SAFE (Samsung approved for the enterprise) program and applications like Knox are the equivalent of leaving the front door open, but locking windows.

Now you can take these comments two ways. First, BlackBerry's Heins is giving Samsung some play in the enterprise by calling the company out. In some respects, BlackBerry may be threatened or even worried. On the other hand, Heins is only outlining what many chief information officers already think about Android---it's a pain to secure. Overall, Heins came off as dismissive of Samsung, which he argues will have good enough security but little else. Heins can use recent headlines to make his case. 

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Samsung countered Heins and said SAFE and Knox were just the beginning of enterprise-friendly efforts. Tim Wagner, general manager of enterprise sales for Samsung Mobile, said:

The BYOD trend shows that people want to choose the device they use for work. With a 100 million Galaxy S devices sold, it is clear that Samsung is growing in popularity. We are committed, and investing significantly, to ensure our devices can be used securely for both work and play.

The reality is that both BlackBerry and Samsung have to gun for Apple, which has used the bring your own device movement to grab the most market share in corporations. According to Citrix , Apple leads the market share race in the enterprise . Android is No. 2. In the consumer world, Android rules in market share.

In many respects, Heins' comments make a lot of sense. Samsung is going after Apple in the enterprise and when the marketing engine gets fired up BlackBerry is at risk of being forgotten.

BlackBerry is likely to have an inside position in the corporate world only because it has a large installed base, is tackling mobile device management and is familiar to IT buyers. Samsung has a bit of convincing to do and need customer wins and the case studies that go with them.

However, Samsung does have a window of opportunity. Gartner has argued that the BlackBerry 10 platform has to prove itself with consumers and then the enterprise again with BlackBerry Enterprise Server. In a recent post, Gartner noted:

Gartner recommends that organizations considering BES10 for a mobile device management (MDM) solution to support multiple devices should wait six months until it is clear that BB10 has proven successful in the consumer market. It is important to wait to make any moves toward full support of BB10 devices until the market makes a clear statement on BB10's success (or lack thereof).

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Topics: Bring Your Own Device, BlackBerry, Mobility, Samsung, Smartphones

About

Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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