BlackBerry, RIM Losing Juice in the Enterprise: 10 Reasons Why

NEWS ANALYSIS: Research In Motion and the company's ubiquitous BlackBerry devices were the enterprise's favorite product. RIM also had success providing much-needed services. But nowadays, it can't get any love.

Research In Motion isn't what it used to be. The BlackBerry maker, less than a decade ago, was able to solidify its position in the enterprise by delivering high-quality products to corporate users who had yet to fully realize how important mobile devices could be to their bottom line and corporate productivity. The BlackBerry, along with the enterprise services RIM provides, proved to be a revolutionary product for the corporate world. And globally, employees became far more productive than they had previously been.

But in recent years, some things have changed. Whereas RIM was once the only mobile company that mattered to enterprise users, now it's just one of many that the corporate world is becoming increasingly disappointed by. The once-dominant mobile firm is being replaced by Apple, Google, Motorola and countless other companies that are starting to effectively deliver what the corporate world is after.

So, how did this happen? More importantly, how did it happen so suddenly?

Here's a look at 10 factors that cased the once high-flying company to come back down to earth.

1. The BlackBerry is a bore

Years ago, the enterprise didn't care about how a product looked or whether it was consumer-friendly. Back then, it was all about functionality. But nowadays, things are much different. The corporate world doesn't necessarily want to give employees boring, old products. And unfortunately for RIM, that's just what it's offering.

2. Apple is making inroads

Apple was once believed to be a consumer-only product provider. But that has changed over the last couple years as the company has gone a long way in making its iPhone and iPad appeal to enterprise users. Now, many more companies are at least considering adopting the iPhone.

3. So is Android

Even more surprising is that Android-based devices have started to become enterprise favorites. Companies like Motorola and Cisco Systems have provided smartphones and tablets, respectively, that corporate users want, and RIM has so far been unable to stop them from making inroads. It's a real issue for the BlackBerry maker.

4. Is RIM too consumer-oriented?

Oddly, RIM has tried to become more consumer-friendly over the last few years. The trouble started when it launched the ill-fated Storm to take on the iPhone, and followed that up with the similarly dreadful Storm 2. Add that to the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, which was marketed to both consumers and enterprise users, and it quickly becomes clear RIM has a bit of an identity crisis right now.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...