MWC 2014: We're not 'trying' to bury Blackberry - Good Technology

By Peter Gothard
24 Feb 2014 View Comments
Christy Wyatt

Enterprise mobile security firm Good Technology's CEO, Christy Wyatt, insists that the company's offer of free migration to its software for BlackBerry customers isn't an attempt to bury the ailing devices firm, but more a direct response to customers who are registering dissatisfaction with both the hardware and the software on offer.

At Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona today, Computing asked Wyatt if Good Technology is trying to wipe BlackBerry out.

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"No! First of all, I'm Canadian... so no. I can never go home!" laughed Wyatt.

"There was a Canadian article that labelled me ‘the BlackBerry killer', so I have to stay in California forever now."

But more seriously, Wyatt insists that the free migration campaign is a direct response to increasing clamour from its customer base, which now comprises around 5,000 enterprises.

"We have a lot of customers calling us and saying ‘I have this BlackBerry population - I have to start giving [end users] access to other things, either because they want iPads and tablets as well as their BlackBerry, or because they want a broader number, but the kind of contracts they're in would prevent them from doing that. If they had a contract that expired in June, but wanted to start migration and installation now - we'd say 'fine, we'll give you the software now', you can start ramping up your users, so when your contract ends, you're up and running."

Wyatt says the campaign is more about jumping on a migration bandwagon, which many enterprises are now undertaking "with or without" Good, and the company is seeking to ask "Have you thought of something else?"

"This isn't about ‘let's kick them when they're down', it's more about having a lot of customers that have really significant problems with their mobility landscape, and I'd be more than happy to help them do that on BlackBerry devices."

Commenting on the acquisition of mobile management firm BoxTone a few days ago for "a valuation in the hundreds of millions, not the tens of millions", Wyatt says she considers Good's growth to be "steady and consistent".

"We're sort of happy to quietly build," she told Computing, citing a "beyond email" user growth of 43 per cent within the past year.

But while Wyatt says she's not ready to "plant a flag in the ground and say it's arrived" when discussing the internet of things, the BoxTone acquisition is very much geared towards this roadmap.

"Because of our customer base, we have a unique perspective: our customers are not generally experimenting with mobile for the first time; they have pretty large deployments. The mobile screen is becoming an increasingly large percentage of the population, taking more and more business-critical applications, so the conversation for us turns to how to help the organisation support these mobile users."

Managing mobile networks beyond the device (and possibly obliterating BlackBerry in the process), seems to be Good's pathway into ubiquitously connected devices.

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