Since releasing BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 (“BES 10”) in 2013, BlackBerry reported light sales for the Mobile Device Management server software. Now on version 12.5, chances are better this time around the former smartphone giant will win over enterprise customers. There are two reasons for this. First, BlackBerry’s sales team is more committed than ever. Second, BES 12 software is completely free. Enterprises pay only for per seat licensing.

Committed sales team

BlackBerry’s sales team is acting more than ever before like a unified team eager to win a sale. The account manager has a role of following up with customers downloading and installing the trial. BlackBerry takes it a step further. Since the trial ends after 30 days, the company gives gold-level support even for the trial installation. In an event where the first level support is unable to resolve installation and set-up issues, the technical team on the sales-side steps in to help the trial customer.

Quite often, software companies that already have billions in sales do not show this level of commitment. BlackBerry is different because the company must push for winning every sale.

WatchDox BlackBerry EMM

The company must ramp up subscription sales for its EMM Suite, which costs a user $3 per month. At the highest end, Good Secure Content Suite costs $25 per month.

For enterprises that want the MDM secured on the cloud, BlackBerry offers BES 12 deployment on the cloud. The company offers high systems availability with 99.9 per cent SLA.

BES 12 is a free download

That BES 12 server software is free, but comes with a catch as mentioned above. Enterprise IT teams may install and test the software for 30 days. This includes gold support.

Good Technology, which BlackBerry acquired last year in November, is now rolled up in the Enterprise Mobility Management solution. Each suite, from the Management Suite to Collaboration to Content Suite, is available to potential customers as a trial. Good has business apps that cater to companies needing a customized workflow. The suite also supports digital rights management. BlackBerry also offers security around third-party apps, including Microsoft’s SharePoint, Lync, and Box.

Android vs. BlackBerry

BES 12 is agnostic to the smartphone operating system. It supports Apple, Android, Samsung’s Knox, and more. There is no longer any advantage getting a BlackBerry device over Apple or Android. Still, BlackBerry fans using a PRIV will recognize significant differences between Android and BBOS10 (at the operating system level). This includes:

  • Calendar app icon on PRIV no longer shows today’s day number (as it did on BBOS10)
  • No swipe to wake, only double-tap to wake
  • No playing of YouTube videos (or videos through browser) while turning screen off
  • Less efficient battery saving technology

BlackBerry Priv-4

Even though BBOS10 has quirks that improve productivity, PRIV and DTEK50 will likely pave the future for all BlackBerry device releases. The user base for BBOS10 is shrinking too quickly. Unless BlackBerry finds a business partner to share the risks in developing BlackBerry-based devices, expect Android-only BlackBerrys.