“Australia’s largest supermarket chain, Woolworths, is dumping its fleet of BlackBerry smartphones in favour of Apple’s iPhone 5, in another corporate blow to the struggling Canadian Research in Motion,” Chris Griffith reports for The Australian. “Woolworths’ head of customer technology Chris Stanley said staff would receive new iPhones when they handed in about 550 company-owned BlackBerrys this week. As a result, Woolworths will go from deploying more than 700 BlackBerrys to none. By contrast, the number of company iPhones in use will spike at about 800 by week’s end. The rollout is to staff in support management roles and regional offices.”

Griffith reports, “Woolworths’ move follows similar decisions by IBM Australia and Qantas to phase out BlackBerry use. In January, IBM Australia said it had decided to stop purchasing RIM devices in a move that would save it $1.4 million a year based on 500 Blackberry users. And in July Qantas said dropping its 1300 BlackBerry handsets would save the airline millions of dollars a year. ‘Transition from the Blackberry to the iPhone is part of Qantas’s broader mobile strategy and once complete will result in significant cost savings,’ Qantas chief information officer Paul Jones said at the time.”

“Woolworths’ move is part of its migration to Apple mobile devices and a coup for Apple and mobile carrier Optus, which negotiated the deal. In August, Woolworths issued 890 iPads to its store managers at its national conference in Sydney. The rollout was greeted with excitement and cheers at the event,” Griffith reports. “He said the August implementation of iPads in stores had proved ‘in short, fabulous. What the iPads are allowing store managers to do is spread out their work through the day. It’s an exercise in getting them out of their back offices and into stores. Most say they are saving eight hours per week.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: And, with that, beleaguered RIM’s coffin has officially run out of wood into which to nail.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

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