BlackBerry partners with Samsung on mobile security
Waterloo, Ont.-based BlackBerry has made a deal with Samsung that will offer BlackBerry's mobile security on Samsung's Android-powered devices.
As part of the deal, customers with Android smartphones like the Galaxy line of Samsung, which is based in South Korea, will have access to software that brings BlackBerry's mobile security technology.
The news comes the same day the Canadian smartphone maker unveiled its latest software — BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 or BES12.
The technology allows companies and enterprise customers to manage older model BlackBerrys alongside newer BB10 versions — but also work seamlessly with devices from competitors like Microsoft, Google and Apple.
It will be available on Rogers in Canada and Vodafone in the U.K. at launch, but other carriers may follow.
"Under the agreement, business customers next year will have access to software on Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablets that is linked with BlackBerry's new mobile security software known as BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12.," BlackBerry executive John Sims said in a statement.
The deal grafts BlackBerry's market-leading reputation for security on to Samsung's mobile security technology, which is called Knox.
BlackBerry's shares gained more than seven per cent on the news, closing at $13.48 on the TSX on Thursday afternoon.
Peter Misek, a venture partner with DN Capital, says Chen has taken a direction that will appeal to the enterprise market.
"What’s really important about it is that he’s actually delivering what enterprises are looking for – so they want secure laptops and secure smartphones, they want security on any computer device that’s not connected in the corporate server," he said in an interview with CBC's The Exchange with Amanda Lang.
The deal with Samsung is also a huge step forward as BlackBerry has "come to realize they are going need to support all the operating systems," Misek said.
The news comes as the company is in the midst of a turnaround plan, led by CEO John Chen.
"Next year is about growth," Chen said in his speech announcing BES12. "We're going to focus on growing not only the top line, we're going to focus on growing the profit … but you've got to give us a little bit of time to get there."
With files from The Canadian Press