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May 04, 2013

Mobility TechZone Week in Review

As Samsung continues to make its secure play for the enterprise, it got some very interesting and, for the company, some very welcome additional news on the security front. The company has been accepted in the Department of Defense as a platform that offers sufficient security capabilities to be considered for use within the DoD. The new BlackBerry 10 operating system platform and the devices that run it have also been accepted by the DoD – though, given BlackBerry’s historic penetration of this market, it isn’t of any surprise – at least not nearly to the sort that Samsung is generating. Neither acceptance however actually guarantees anything in terms of device sales. The DoD may decide to go with Apple! But for Samsung it’s a very nice start.

In an interesting switch, Samsung has opted to go with an entirely different operating system for its Blu-Ray players. Samsung has announced that it has teamed up with Opera and will use its technology, rather than, say, Android.

Thorsten Heins, BlackBerry’s CEO would love nothing better than for the DoD to buy up millions of its smartphones. The company just launched its keyboard-based BlackBerry Q10 in London and BlackBerry reports it has sold out.

But don’t expect BlackBerry to sell very many PlayBook tablets into any market, the government or otherwise. In fact Heins is so sure that there will be no PlayBook sales that he has now proclaimed the entire tablet market as dead – or likely to be a dead end before the next five years are out. He suggests that tablets simply offer a bad business deal. Certainly, this perspective is as interesting it is dead wrong.

We’ll note that Windows Phone 8 – although continuing to face slow growth relative to iOS an Android, has nevertheless begun to make some interesting inroads. The operating system (and obviously the devices that make use of it – especially Nokia Lumia devices) is noticing steady growth according to a newly released Q1 2013 Kantar Worldpanel WP8 study. Moreover, it is doing so in the United States, a critical region for both Microsoft and Nokia. It’s a good thing to see.

As Apple begins to muster its forces to deliver a lot of what all of us hope will be truly new and innovative host of things at its upcoming 2013 World Wide Developers Conference, we’ve gotten wind of a new Samsung entry in its lineup – a 4.3 inch Galaxy S4, which may arrive as early as July of this year. We’ve often said that an iPhone-sized Galaxy S4 would in fact be an Apple nightmare, and it would be had Samsung introduced it as its actual lead device rather than the five inch version. Ah well, Samsung can keep trying to catch up to Apple on the very high end. BTW, smartphone extended warranty vendor SquareTrade has given the Galaxy S4 a breakability rating of 7 (the iPhone 5 is rated a 5 by SquareTrade). This means the S4 is slated to break a lot! Better get that extended warranty – you may need it.

Verizon Wireless has taken a very bold move into the future, and has decided to offer Android users a cloud-based backup service. We kid of course about smartphone backup services being a bold step into the future! But perhaps that is a necessary thing to have in hand now, just in case your Android smartphone is overtaken by malware. Consumers are now so concerned about Android malware that downloads of AntiVirus Free for Android have now exceeded 70 million. That is a lot of Android malware concern.

Symantec, that bastion of anti malware and security software, has just come out with a study that unsurprisingly predicts that enterprise BYOD has become completely mainstream, even though the dangers of Android malware are far more prevalent than most enterprises think. That is why we have such events as the newly launched SecureIT conference, which this year will take place in New York City, a mecca of BYOD enterprises. The entire day will be focused on protecting those enterprise BYOD assets.

Have a great weekend!

Edited by Blaise McNamee

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