A recent report suggests that despite the runaway success of the iPhone, the rising prominence of Android, and the recent introdution of Windows Phone 7, BlackBerry smartphones aren’t going anywhere in the business world, and should continue to hold their top spot among such users for five more years.
ABI Research looked at trends in how business customers choose their smartphones. Based on its projections, in 2015 BlackBerry models will slide out of the top ranking into a tie with Android phones, both accounting for about a quarter of the market.
ABI identified the main factors weighing upon how business customers choose their phones as system security, availability of third-party apps, and powerful enterprise tools for managing company-wide phone deployment. While BlackBerry has the leg up when it comes to those right now, Android is likely to catch up as its software base matures and developers create new management tools for the system.
While ABI sees Android and BlackBerry vying for the top spot, Symbian’s market share should drop to a distant third place, followed by iOS-powered devices and Windows Phone handsets. There’s just so much competition going on, and so many options, that the future is unlikely to be dominated by any one platform. Instead of Android rising to take BlackBerry’s place, look for a sort of equilibrium to take hold, as businesses shop around more to find which platform meets the specific needs of each.
Of course, all these projections go right out the window should a new game-changer arrive on the scene. ABI is considering extensions of current market forces, and for all we know whatever the next iPhone or Android ends up being could just now be taking shape as an idea in some engineer’s mind; there’s no predicting that.