RIM's BlackBerry grip on the enterprise may be slipping

Research In Motion's (NASDAQ:RIMM) Blackberry, long a mainstay of enterprises across the globe, may be losing its grip on the enterprise market as Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone and a slew of devices running Google's Android platform continue to migrate into businesses. Not surprisingly, RIM is hoping to stem the rise of those platforms with a refresh of its own.

blackberry 6Apple COO Tim Cook crowed last week during the company's earnings conference call that 80 percent of Fortune 100 companies are deploying or testing the iPhone. While RIM made its name by delivering push email to corporate smartphone users, the iPhone and many Android phones have support for Microsoft Exchange corporate email, as well as advanced features and large application storefronts.

According to research firm Gartner, RIM's American smartphone market share dropped to 41 percent in the first quarter, down from 55 percent in the year-ago period. Meanwhile, iPhone and Android handsets grew their share to a combined 49 percent, up from 23 percent in the year-ago period. 

Nevertheless, RIM remains a global smartphone powerhouse, and is not going away any time soon. According to research firm Strategy Analytics, RIM had 18.8 percent of the global smartphone market in the second quarter, down slightly from 19.1 percent in the first quarter and 19.3 percent in the year-ago quarter.

RIM also has a chance to improve its fortunes with the release of Blackberry OS 6.0, which it plans to push sometime in the third quarter. RIM has been touting the multimedia features of the new operating system, as well as its updated user interface and home screen. In its fiscal first quarter, RIM posted revenue of around $4.2 billion, up from the company's year-ago revenue of $3.4 billion, and above its $4.1 billion revenue in its previous quarter.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this Barron's blog post
- see this BlackBerry blog post

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