Woolworths dumps beleaguered RIM’s Blackberry for Apple iPhone 5

“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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Those still using BlackBerry phones ‘ashamed’ – October 16, 2012


    1. Vulnerabilities in non-rooted devices is what’s squashing Android in the corporate world. A rooted device? Forget it! That thing is more wide open to viruses than Lindsay Lohan’s snatch when she’s on a coke binge.

    1. I’m by no means an expert on BlackBerry but I think the fees are saved mainly on the backend on BES (BlackBerry Enterprise Servers) that connect the BB’s to the corporate-wide network and allows for the administration of BB’s by remotely wiping lost handsets and imposed company-wide policies and pushing encrypted mail & messaging services.

      I think Apple has a corporate-wide management module that comes with OS X Server, but again, I’m not sure on this point.

      1. ^This.
        but I don’t think Apple charges.. cause we all know that “Find my phone” can do the exact same.

        the BES stuff can be a huge “fee” to use BB’s in your business.
        seen the numbers before, something like almost $2500 per 10 users…
        IMO all a BB was ever good for was E-mail. and they have lost that footing years ago. someone will say that a BB can do stuff that an iPhone can’t with email… I understand that. but the vast majority of users do not care.

        and if a company wants to bring tablets to the workforce… now they HAVE to use a blackberry if they go playbook… iPad/Android can both do email without a BB. Playbook can’t… (Unless Rim changed that)

        We have a BB phone contract for our managers. all but a handful… use iPhones that they pay for themselves. the Company pays the BB service.. and it sits on their desk for the odd chance someone above them calls them on it. When someone pays out of pocket for an iPhone… instead of the “free” BB they are given as part of their job…

    2. It’s probably less about money saved and more about productivity gained. Who the heck wants to use those outdated BB smartphones? Considering the way users continue to demand those huge displays, the BB display must seem archaic to look at. Heck, the tech-pundits claim even the iPhone 5 display is too small to be useful. I think a number of companies wonder if RIM is going to be around for the long-term, so it might be wise to just go elsewhere before they’re left holding a bag of useless BBs.

    1. Remarkably, our Woolworths is historically unrelated to your Woolworth’s. Woolworths has almost half (!) the total grocery supermarket business here and it doing very well.

    2. As a kid I remember well the Woolworths here in the States very affectionately. My Mom would take me to their diner counter and get me a chocolate malt after usually a visit to the Dentist (I know). The thing that to me that was so cool is it came in one of those silver metal casters and a glass with enough left over in the canister for another glass. That totally rocked my adolescent world! Awesome!

  1. “It’s an exercise in getting them out of their back offices and into stores. Most say they are saving eight hours per week.’”

    Not bad for a ‘toy’. A toy that pays for itself in just two weeks in retrieved work hours.

  2. Money saved by not using RIMs outdated 80’s licensing and server model. The iPhone has an SDK that will allow them to do exactly the same as the Blackberry, but with Apps customizable or written by the user company, a more elegant and much easier to use device, and all with equal security and remote wipe and all the rest.

    The iPhone is the true SmartPhone – the rest are a mixed bag of outdated crap, bad hardware, bad design, and all suffer from this 1980’s problem.
    Blackberry was ok for a while, they made their profits, played at becoming hockey team owners (!) and now its over.
    The world has passed them by, and thats a normal event in the life of a tech co.

    Nothing last forever, and they had good run. Its seems a bit ungrateful to keep on wanting to be the top dog for ever.

    Even Apple will one day go through this. But not anytime soon.

    1. I know what you’re saying and it seems logical Apple will one day go too except for the fact their so-called DNA has built-in red flags and a culture that doesn’t make it afraid to make themselves obsolete in the pursuit of the next big thing. Whereas companies like Microsoft are scared bunnies about changing anything unless backed into a corner as they are now. So Apple may well be the exception t that rule. I don’t think either they take their position for granted (also unlike Microsoft) especially when you consider their prior low market share history. Going long on Apple…

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