The broader mobile computing vision
Heins came in for some criticism recently around remarks he made about the future of tablets and the tablet market, so he took time to explore the company's mobile computing vision. Using the QNX demonstration Bentley, he showed how a large-screen device (here built into a car) could be controlled by a phone, including scheduling and managing updates, and integrating with BlackBerry's cloud services.
With QNX's real-time OS at the core of embedded systems all over the world, BlackBerry's mobile computing vision is one where smartphones serve as a bridge between users and the "Internet of things." Heins pointed out that the pieces are in place, "It's mobile computing, with one element on your hip, in your pocket; how it relates to large screens is a technical issue. In five years, it'll be connecting to screens and to cars."
Secure work space and BYOD
While much of the focus on BlackBerry has been on the consumer side of the business, BlackBerry 10 provides a powerful platform for BYOD, from its range of application development tools to the Balance managed container that securely separates work and personal data and apps.
Much of BlackBerry's BYOD story builds on its BlackBerry Enterprise Server, which provides both secure device management and secure communications to the managed Work side of Balance. A new version of BES, 10.1, will add high-availability support as well as tooling for regulated industries. BES 10.1 is also the foundation for BlackBerry's Secure Work Space tool, which will add Balance-like features to Android and to iOS and a secure, VPN-less connection to company resources. Due in the summer, Secure Work Space will also allow developers to build apps that can take advantage of its managed storage and network.
It's easy to miss the importance of Secure Work Space to BlackBerry -- and to anyone implementing a BYOD policy. You'll be able to standardize on a single mobile device management platform for all your managed devices, with a per-device licensing model, and with access to BlackBerry's own secure data network. Users will be able to keep their own data separate from work data, while organizations will be able to reduce the risks of data loss and data leakage. It won't matter whether users are bringing iOS or Android devices in alongside BlackBerrys, the same tools will work for them all, for mail, for messaging, for file browsing, for document reading. While apps may not be fully portable, technologies like BlackBerry's HTML5 WebWorks platform will allow you to build apps that will offer basic cross-platform capabilities.