BlackBerry continues to sing the blues

There is more bad news for BlackBerry.

Following BlackBerry's report of a net loss of $5.9 billion and a 38 percent revenue decline for its most recent fiscal year comes a Ponemon Institute survey that finds close to half of financial services IT pros plan to phase out BlackBerry completely by next year.

While 44 percent of mobile devices currently in use at financial services organizations are BlackBerry, that number is expected to decrease to 30 percent in the next 12 months. Not only that, 49 percent plan to completely phase out BlackBerry in the next 12 months.

The survey of 400 IT pros in the financial services industry was conducted by Ponemon on behalf of MobleIron, which of course has an incentive to highlight BlackBerry's troubles in the enterprise.

"The primary driver of migration is not concern about BlackBerry's financial stability, but the primary drivers are user driven," Ojas Rege, vice president of strategy at MobileIron, tells FierceMobileIT.

The line-of-business believes migrating away from BlackBerry is a much higher priority than IT does. On a 10-point scale, 55 percent of respondents rate the level of urgency from the line-of-business as a 9 or 10, while only 15 percent rate the level of urgency from IT as a 9 or 10.

More than two-thirds of respondents say their CIO believes smartphones and tablets will replace most desktops and laptops. Only 38 percent of respondents said that their CIO is confident that they can address the risks posed by these new mobile platforms.

This lack of confidence is reflected in a lack of mobile strategy. A disturbing half of respondents say their company does not have one. Of those companies that do have a mobile strategy, 45 percent say it is not aligned with IT objectives and 36 percent say it is not aligned with business objectives.

While the situation for BlackBerry in the financial services market might be bleak, new CEO John Chen has taken steps to right the corporate ship. He has refocused BlackBerry on its core enterprise market and has made some hard decisions, including changing the executive line-up, speeding up laying offs and selling much of the firm's real estate holdings.

Whether Chen has come in time to save the once dominant mobility firm remains to be seen. - Fred