BlackBerry rolls out five sets of mobile management software

The first fruits of BlackBerry's $425m Good Technology acquisition have arrived.
Written by Steve Ranger, Global News Director

BlackBerry still makes phones such as the Priv, but is increasingly focusing on its mobile management software.

BlackBerry has taken the first steps in integrating the technology from its recent acquisition Good Technology, unveiling a set of five mobile security, management, productivity and collaboration packages.

BlackBerry said the Good Secure enterprise mobility management (EMM) suites offer identity and access management, containerization and enterprise file sync and share with file level data protection. BlackBerry competed its $425m acquisition of Good Technology in November and said at the time that the deal would add about $160m in revenue in its first year.

The Good Secure EMM Suites provide secure access to data and applications behind the firewall or in the cloud for multiple devices.

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Pricing starts at $3 per user per month for the Good Secure Management Suite, $5 for the Good Secure Enterprise Suite, $10 for the Good Secure Collaboration Suite, $15 for the Good Secure Mobility Suite and the Good Secure Content Suite will cost $25 per user per month. BlackBerry said the software can be deployed on-premise or via a cloud-based model. Good had previously offered packages similar to the first four EMM suites.

Acquiring Good is a key step in BlackBerry's attempt to remake itself, from a company known for making phones running on its own operating system, to one that makes management and security software for multiple mobile operating systems.

BlackBerry quoted figures from research firm Strategy Analytics, which puts the combined market share of BlackBerry and Good in the EMM market at 25 percent. While BlackBerry still makes smartphones such as the Priv above, it expects much of its future growth to come from mobile management software.

Of particular interest to BlackBerry is Good's secure applications and containerization technology, and also its experience in supporting iPhones: 64 percent of activations of its software come from iOS devices, followed by Android and Windows. BlackBerry has also been building up its Android credentials by working with Samsung on its Knox security software.

BlackBerry said its BES 12.4 software features integration of Good's secure container and apps for a single source of user enrollment. It also includes security enhancements for iOS, including BlackBerry Secure Gateway for secure, behind-the- firewall access to native iOS mail and BlackBerry Secure Connect Plus for iOS, which can be configured as a device-wide or per-app VPN.

The Good acquisition also expands BlackBerry's enterprise and government customer base - Good has 6,200 customers include more than half of the Fortune 100 and span commercial banks, aerospace and defence, healthcare, manufacturing and retail.

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