Department of Defense denies ditching BlackBerry for iOS [UPDATE: Official Statement]

Mar 21, 2013
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Yesterday, we reported that the Department of Defense was rumored to be ordering 650,000 iOS devices in order to ditch BlackBerry. It's actually been reported for the last several weeks that the Department of Defense was aiming their sites on iOS instead of BlackBerry. However, the government agency has spoken, and has denied that they're ditching BlackBerry for another platform.

Department of Defense spokesperson Lt. Col. Damien Pickart said that the recent reporting of the DoD dropping BlackBerry in favor of iOS "is in error." Furthermore, Pickart notes that the DoD's mobility strategy and supporting implementation plan states that the department is "moving towards a mobile management capability that supports a variety of devices, to include BlackBerry."

UPDATE: BlackBerry has sent an official statement on the matter -

BlackBerry Statement

Our work with the U.S. Department of Defense is going well and the U.S. Department of Defense is moving forward with testing of BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 and the new BlackBerry Z10 smartphone. We are currently working with the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) and anticipate Security Technical Implementation Guides (STIG) and Security Requirement Guide (SRG) approval for the BlackBerry Device Service, BlackBerry 10 and BlackBerry PlayBook by early April. BlackBerry was the first to go through the new SRG process by the Defense Department and will be the first to successfully come out of it.

The Department of Defense was rumored to be ordering 650,000 iOS devices, which matches up with the approximate 600,000 devices currently being used by DoD employees. However, Pickart said that he is not aware of any plans to place that large of an order for iOS devices, saying that he is "unfamiliar with the figures quoted" in various reports.

Pickart notes that the Department of Defense's mobile plan consists of including multiple platforms, including BlackBerry and iOS, as well as Android possibly. Currently, Pickart says that the department supports over 600,000 mobile devices, including 470,000 BlackBerry devices, 41,000 iOS devices, and 8,700 Android devices.

[via PC Mag]

Image via Flickr


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