Sorry, BlackBerry, the White House is Flirting With Other Smartphones
The White House Communications Agency, the military unit in charge of the president’s communications, is reportedly looking for more out of its relationship with mobile technology than BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) can provide. A person familiar with the situation tells the Wall Street Journal that the White House is testing smartphones from Samsung and LG Electronics for internal use.
“We can confirm that the White House Communications Agency, consistent with the rest of the Department of Defense, is piloting and using a variety of mobile devices,” a Defense Department spokesman told the WSJ, although the publication’s source said that any implementation is still months away.
The possible loss of its contract with the White House would be a pretty serious blow to BlackBerry, which is facing tough competition for enterprise customers not just from Samsung and LG Electronics, but from Apple (NASAQ:AAPL) and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG). The news is just the latest in a series of reports describing the evaporation of BlackBerry’s footprint in government and business. According to market research firm International Data Corporation, BlackBerry’s market share among U.S. business customers has fallen from 70 percent in 2010 to about 5 percent in 2013 — globally, that share is down to 8 percent from 31 percent over the same period.
In February, the U.S. Air Force announced that it is replacing some 5,000 BlackBerry devices with iPhones, the latest move in the organization’s overall shift away from the BlackBerry platform.