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BlackBerry Devices May Run Android Apps 158

Posted by timothy
from the western-civilization-would-be-a-good-idea dept.
crankyspice writes "RIM is allegedly prepping the QNX-based operating system running their forthcoming PlayBook tablet to run Android applications, according to a Bloomberg article. As RIM has stated that the QNX platform will run at least some of its upcoming smartphones as well, this could cinch Android's status as the lingua franca of smartphone application environments, especially with BlackBerry's current market leadership and Android's explosive marketshare growth."
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BlackBerry Devices May Run Android Apps

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    Is a job at RIM. You know what that is called?
    • by Shikaku (1129753)

      A bad pun.

    • Re:what i'd like (Score:5, Informative)

      by Joe Jay Bee (1151309) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {aeshtuosbj}> on Saturday February 12, 2011 @07:56PM (#35189398)

      You joke, but their jobsite url is actually http://rim.jobs [rim.jobs].

      • Oh, that's hilarious.

        But back on topic, as a blackberry user I'm not sure I'd want Android binary compatibility. Maybe I would, but the Blackberry really has a much better security record than Android, and serious malware in Blackberry App World is rare, which can't be said of the Android Market Place.
        • Yeah, with an actual on-topic comment from me now, speaking as a former BlackBerry user who moved onto Android, some Android apps could be just what BB needs. Most of the stuff on App World was simply useless to me, whereas the Android Market has had lots of very useful stuff in the short time I've had the phone. A real pity, since what the BB does it does very well (communication, email, phone etc - Android doesn't hold a candle to the BlackBerry).

        • Re:what i'd like (Score:4, Insightful)

          by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:23PM (#35189526) Journal
          The interesting thing will be to see how it is implemented. More specifically, how they handle the sharing of phone-related resources(address books, dialer access, memory card contents, etc.)

          Merely getting Dalvik, or a JVM tweaked enough to act like it, up and running on QNX would take work; but wouldn't present fundamental challenges. Nor, unless you really screwed it up, would it be more dangerous than the potentially-untrusted java applications you can run on Blackberries.

          However, that also wouldn't be too terribly useful. A fair number of phone applications depend, for their usefulness, on access to some amount of the outside world. Having a completely separate address book on the blackberry side and the "android" side would get really old, really fast. On the other hand, Mr. Corporate IT, MCSE, is going to be very, very unhappy if he learns that some skeezy android application is siphoning off the internal company directory to some offshore FTP site because RIM has provided the android environment with a link to the Blackberry side.

          That seems like it will be the really tricky bit(both in terms of security, and in terms of user experience elegance). In principle, the technical difficulty of dumping a tame android-compatible environment in all sorts of places isn't that high. Making it worth using, and making sure that it plays nicely with the host environment, requires more finesse....
          • by Fuzion (261632)

            On the other hand, Mr. Corporate IT, MCSE, is going to be very, very unhappy if he learns that some skeezy android application is siphoning off the internal company directory to some offshore FTP site because RIM has provided the android environment with a link to the Blackberry side.

            What prevents a blackberry app from doing this right now? I don't see this as a new problem introduced by android support so much as an issue with any malicious app whether for blackberry or android.

            • by afidel (530433)
              Fine grained security model where every action requires you to either trust the app or approve the specific action kind of like cookie tracking in browsers with a locked down policy. Also on the Blackberry you often can't just install any old app but have to have it approved by the BES Admin. Personally as a big fan of the BB platform and the backup BES admin for my company I think this is a great thing, the small app library is one of the biggest downsides to the current Blackberry solution so if we can us
    • by sootman (158191)

      I hear you've got to kiss a lot of ass to get one.

  • Now if only RIM didn't make horrible hardware. If this is true, nothing but good news for the consumer. I'm not so sure we're going to like a Google response.
    • Re:Consumer Victory (Score:4, Informative)

      by Joe Jay Bee (1151309) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {aeshtuosbj}> on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:22PM (#35189520)

      Horrible hardware? My ex's BB Curve got dropped into water about 5 times and survived. My old Bold suffered so many drops and pummelings I'm surprised it's still alive. Both had excellent keyboards which I now miss immensely having an Android phone.

      It's underspecced, granted, but for communication, social networking and the like Blackberry is incredibly good at what it does.

      • by grapeape (137008)

        The only problem I have had is the damn trackball, with my first curve the ball actually fell out and with my second it just stopped working...overall though the rest of the phone was great..I did notice the new ones ditched the trackball for a joystick so im assuming I wasnt the only one with trackball problems.

        • The TB not working is a known issue and easily fixed most of the time. I've had to fix upward of 50 of them. Trackball on a phone is a bad idea, they are grime & lint magnets.

      • It's a quality build, sure, I'll giver you that. but it lacks in features and performance. Every argument about the hardware being great for RIM can be summed up with 1) It takes a beating 2) it has a keyboard. How about capable hardware with quality features. HTC and Samsung blow anything RIM has out to kingdom come. Arguing that RIM makes great hardware because it's a quality build is like arguing that a pioneer wagon is a great vehicle because it can handle rough terrain.
        • Every argument about the hardware being great for RIM can be summed up with 1) It takes a beating 2) it has a keyboard.

          Correction: it has a really good keyboard that puts others to shame. It's difficult to overstate this: if you really want to thumb-type fast, there's no other keyboard like it.

    • Now if only RIM didn't make horrible hardware.

      Actually, RIM hardware is quite good quality compared to most of the Android phones I've seen. Not the highest spec hardware, but reliable, solid, and with reasonable battery life. My friends' Android phones have dreadful battery life and feel clunky and toy-like in comparison.

  • Who knew?

    Bistro Math [netdna-cdn.com] says Gartner.

    • by florin (2243) *

      Like TFA [wirelessan...lenews.com] says, they're talking about market leadership in North America.

      It could also be said they're market leaders in corporate messaging devices.

      • by icebike (68054)

        Like TFA [wirelessan...lenews.com] says, they're talking about market leadership in North America.

        It could also be said they're market leaders in corporate messaging devices.

        Quick, call J D Power and Associates. They will dream up a specific category that Rim can Dominate. Bring your wallet.

      • by msauve (701917)
        The article show market leadership by manufacturer - not OS. That only makes the summary misleading, since it refers to the Android OS as comparable. They're two different things.

        But, at least the firms creating these numbers have their terminology correct. Nielson ignorantly refers to installed base as "market share," which makes everything they put out suspect.
  • RIM had considered using Google's Dalvik, the Java software used in running Android apps, and decided against it for reasons including an ongoing patent dispute between Oracle Corp. and Google over the software, two people said.

    Would a clean-room implementation of an interpreter to run Dalvik bytecode actually evade the legal issues with Dalvik itself?

    Presumably they have licensed Java properly for their mobile devices. Are they just going to translate Dalvik bytecode back to Java bytecode, and run Android

    • My understanding is that(unlike copyrights) patents are unaffected by cleanroom/non-cleanroom status. A patent confers a monopoly, for a limited time, on whatever it covers, period, whether the other party is copying you, an independent discoverer, or cleanrooming.

      On the other hand, since Blackberries have traditionally run a JVM, Sun licenced and all, they would presumably have a license to use the patents at issue. I don't know whether the license under which they have that use would preclude their pro
    • by PCM2 (4486)

      Are they just going to translate Dalvik bytecode back to Java bytecode, and run Android applications that way?

      It would have to be something like that, though I doubt it will be on-the-fly. And Android isn't just Dalvik, it has its own set of APIs and a core Linux kernel as well. I posted some thoughts on this [infoworld.com] a couple weeks back over at InfoWorld.

    • I don't think the problem is the Java license.

      In order to be able to be able use of the Sun/Oracle patents, the VM (Dalvik or a clean-room version of it) must pass the TCK (compatibility suite). Since Oracle will not license the TCK, passing this compatibility test is impossible. Therefore, shipping a VM without this would would violate the Oracle patents (just like what Google is being sued about). In order to implement a JVM on the BB, they would have to use the certified Java ME, which is crap and prett

      • by eyegone (644831)
        I can imagine that Oracle would be quite happy to accept RIM's money for an "Android patent license". It would be exactly the (market) precedent they want.
      • by rrossman2 (844318)

        BB already uses a JVM.. that's what BB OS is

    • I won't speculate on what RIM are doing behind closed doors but I suggest you read up on IcedRobot [jroller.com], announced this week by a handful of IcedTea/OpenJDK enthusiasts. Mario Torre specifically mentions replacing Dalvik with OpenJDK's Hotspot VM, targetting QNX and, yes, decompiling Dalvik to standard JVM bytecode.
      Java SE is heavier than Java ME but for the current generation of 800+Mhz CPUs, it's less of a burden. Of course the Java ME APIs would need to be emulated [microemu.org] for 'legacy' blackberry apps but if the QNX
  • We need apps that truly are "content", the same way text, sound, and video are.. ie, playable pretty much anywhere. If Android can be that "format", we're saving a lot of sweat and tears.

    • We're close to that already. With AJAX type apps, Java, Flash, etc., it's possible to run apps on different platforms and still look the same, use the same code, etc..
      I've been running Chrome as my browser recently and have used the app store. Whether running on Win7 or RHEL6 or Ubuntu 10.10, it looks and feels the same.

    • It looks like the industry is going to HTML 5 for that kind of thing. For business-type apps that you don't care what they look like, internal apps or whatever, a lot of companies seem to be doing that. The only people who are staying native are people who care what their app looks like on an individual phone, or people who need excellent graphics or something like that.
  • Now this is a game changer. If the PlayBook has all the enterprise-y features it claims, nice hardware as specified AND supports most of the Android Marketplace apps, I think I wouldn't want any other tablet device but that.
  • by Gonoff (88518) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:12PM (#35189462)
    This may be more proof that Nokias action to become subsumed by Microsoft (and that's what it is) is a losing course of action for them.
    • by icebike (68054)

      You have to wonder why they went that way.

      If they wanted to shed the cost of development of their own OS, the logical thing would have been to adopt Android.
      Instead, they will send all that money to MS, and still have nothing of their own.

      I was pretty disappointed to hear that news.

      • by Zelgadiss (213127)

        Really foolish of them to put themselves at the mercy of one of the most ruthless tech companies in existence.

        If MS suddenly decide they don't want to sell WP7 to them or decides to price gouge them, Nokia is utterly fucked.

        All the apps are reliant on WP7 not Nokia's hardware, your users will be MS's customers not yours.

        I find it ironic that Nokia CEO list fear of commodization as the reason to join MS instead of Android, when all they will be doing soon is providing generic (and commodized) hardware for WP

    • by Zelgadiss (213127)

      Was going to post just this.

      This is the way to do it IMO.

      Nokia jumping in bed with MS was a retarded idea.

  • emulate (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    if you cannot beat them - emulate them

  • by DavidinAla (639952) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:16PM (#35189492)
    This is a horrible idea. Why would anybody outside of RIM bother to write apps for Blackberry if this happens? If they're really doing this, it just proves that RIM doesn't care about the user experience for Blackberry users. To have apps from different platforms mixing will mean that there's no consistency in look and feel. Native Blackberry apps will dry up (even more than they already are). Soon, people will say, "Why buy a Blackberry when I'm just running Android apps?" I don't really care whether RIM does it, because I don't use Blackberry or Android. (I'm an iPhone user.) I just think it's a really stupid business move. It's going to be hard for RIM to survive as an independent company, but this certainly won't help.
    • by Alarash (746254)
      RIM's core market are business users. This market is safe. They are only trying to expand it to the general public, and for that you need apps. I guess it takes longer to fix your whole API than just throw a VM in.
      • by icebike (68054) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:57PM (#35189664)

        RIM's core market are business users. This market is safe.

        No, its not safe.

        Android is going after business as well. (Apple pretends to, but then insists you install a music player to manage a phone).

        There isn't a single mainstream business platform that Android can't interact with, securely. Sometimes with built in apps, in other cases third party apps are better. Look at TouchDown some time as merely one example.

        Rim was/is the leader in this, but they can't rest on their laurels.

        • by Alarash (746254)
          Thing is, you can't rely on the client-side only for business. RIM's Enterprise Server (or whatever the name) is a huge part of their success I think. There are of course workarounds (like using the Web Outlook Access API) but it's not as effective as push and other things their server do. You can manage the phones remotely, blacklist them in case of theft, etc... Don't get me wrong, I would love Android becoming the reference OS for business phone users, but I don't see anyone able to compete against RIM a
          • by icebike (68054)

            Rely only on Client side?

            Have you looked into TouchDown? http://www.nitrodesk.com/features.aspx [nitrodesk.com]
            It has all the server side control you could want. And its just one of a dozen offerings by different companies.

            And Push is no big deal, In fact it isn't even unique. IMAP IdleD is just as effective, and just as reliable and it is free and unencumbered with patents because its just TCP/IP.

            With Secure Imap and secure smtp there is no third company involved to sell out your account to some foreign Arab state, bec

        • by sydsavage (453743)

          (Apple pretends to, but then insists you install a music player to manage a phone).

          That's funny, I don't think any of these [apple.com] would be considered a music player.

      • by tlhIngan (30335)

        I guess it takes longer to fix your whole API than just throw a VM in.

        Actually, I think it's a matter of setting the right class library used.

        In the really old days, a Blackberry was an embedded 386 processor that used a special SDK that let you use Visual Studio to generate a bunch of DLL's (yes, the same DLL's that Windows uses) that were the apps. Since then, RIM went Java and Blackberry apps really are just Java apps.

        Thus, running Android apps isn't much more work than implementing the Android classes a

    • Soon, people will say, "Why buy a Blackberry when I'm just running Android apps?"

      I've said it twice in this thread so far: because for actual communication - SMS, email, phone, IM and the like - the BlackBerry absolutely spanks the iPhone and Android hands down.

      • by joh (27088)

        Soon, people will say, "Why buy a Blackberry when I'm just running Android apps?"

        I've said it twice in this thread so far: because for actual communication - SMS, email, phone, IM and the like - the BlackBerry absolutely spanks the iPhone and Android hands down.

        But you could implement those as well as Android apps (and/or add features supporting these to Android). What makes a Blackberry special (in a useful way) is not the OS. What people want is the features and maybe some aspects of the hardware. Maybe the "brand" or things like enterprise/business support. People don't buy Operating Systems.

        • by PCM2 (4486)

          What people want is the features and maybe some aspects of the hardware. Maybe the "brand" or things like enterprise/business support. People don't buy Operating Systems.

          They do when the features they want are baked into the OS. BlackBerry's push infrastructure is still the best around, and it remains so because RIM has a lot of patents in this area which it defends vigorously. You "could" implement the same thing as Android apps ... and yet no one has.

        • What makes it special is that Blackberries CURRENTLY do those things well. Arguing that android COULD is irrelevant; its battery life and overall communication experience is not as good as blackberry's right NOW.

      • by Chas (5144)

        Soon, people will say, "Why buy a Blackberry when I'm just running Android apps?"

        I've said it twice in this thread so far: because for actual communication - SMS, email, phone, IM and the like - the BlackBerry absolutely spanks the iPhone and Android hands down.

        Okay, I used to own a Blackberry (a real one, not one of the consumer-grade ones). And I challenge the notion that it's superior for said purposes.

        I find the keyboard on my Galaxy S phone to be eminently more usable than the Blackberry keypad.

        • I, personally, find the Android keyboard to be OK compared to the BlackBerry one. Not brilliant, not awful, just... OK. I definitely can't type as fast, and I'd say it restricts what I can do a little - I'd think nothing of banging out a few paragraph's worth of email or forum post on the BB Bold, but I find my Defy a bit clumsy for anything longer than a text message.

          There's also the actual OS itself where the BB wins - I can't tell you how much I miss having a unified messaging list with texts, all my ema

      • Soon, people will say, "Why buy a Blackberry when I'm just running Android apps?"

        For the keyboard, the brand, the IT department support, and the Exchange integration. From a user's perspective Android support is a good thing, and a value add for BlackBerry. The real question is for developers: why produce software for BlackBerry when BB users can run Android apps? I think developers will ditch the native BB software if BBs run Android.

        It's funny, I used to work for RIM and I remember chatting with another engineer over beers after Google first announced their plans for Android. We both

    • by Chas (5144)

      Actually it's a decent idea. It gives them access to a large number of apps. With a quality ranging from "superb" down to "damn terrible".

      Most of the decent BB-native apps are from RIM-proper. The third party environment comes in three classes.

      Damn Terrible, OMFG!, and "Fuck this, I'm going to get an iPhone!"

      I know of at least one app (essentially failed now) that used no less than SEVEN JAVA ENVIRONMENTS during initial implementation. Each of the various components of the app was written using a differ

    • To have apps from different platforms mixing will mean that there's no consistency in look and feel.

      From what little I've seen from Android SDK, it seems that your average UI application should pick up the L&F from the system, for the most part - so Blackberry could just feed them its own.

    • Actually, I was thinking it was the opposite - very good for Blackberry, and somewhat harmful for Android.

      Here I'm speaking specifically of the Playbook. What Android tablet right now looks very compelling if you can run Android stuff on a Playbook later this year?

      To me it seems like it could impact the momentum of the wave of Android tablets about to hit.

    • by Zelgadiss (213127)

      Why would anybody outside of RIM bother to write apps for Blackberry if this happens?

      That's the point, with this idea they wouldn't have too.

    • by mrops (927562)

      "I don't use Blackberry.."

      "(I'm an iPhone user.)"

      I think these two statements clearly show that you are not qualified for making such claims.

      Can you do blackberry messaging on iPhone (since you don't use a BB, think of it as encrypted/free worldwide SMS to any other BB device). i.e. its secure.

      Can you do secure email on your iPhone?

      Can you make iPhone part of your corporate network, encrypted all the way from your corporate network to the device over the wireless carrier's network?

      I for one would love a BB that can handle Android apps and support all thes

    • by Qwavel (733416)

      Native BB apps have already dried up AND they don't scale to tablet or even mini-tablet. Their app platform is based on Java ME which is quite old and limiting technology.

      RIM has no choice but to hurt their developers and begin the transition to a new app platform. (And this is very mild, and expected, compared to what Nokia has just done to their developer community.)

      I believe this is a good, and necessary, strategy. The mix of RIM's business platform and services plus Android will make a powerful combi

    • by gmhowell (26755)

      This is a horrible idea. Why would anybody outside of RIM bother to write apps for Blackberry if this happens?

      Steve somebody or other made a very similar observation regarding some bit of tech a while back...

  • Ask IBM (Score:4, Interesting)

    by joh (27088) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @08:31PM (#35189568)

    They know very well how it "helped" OS/2 to be able to run Windows software... which meant that nobody wrote native OS/2 applications -- it ran Windows apps after all.

    One thing I'm always wondering in these OS wars: You can take Android, leave out the Google App market and other Google apps and add your own instead. OK, this is some work but you're free from Google then, you don't even have to pay them license fees, and whatever you have to do yourself you had to do for your very own OS anyway: Write apps, supply services, build an ecosystem.

    Microsoft could have done this: Build on Android, use Bing instead of Google, supply cloud services, offer an app market. And offer a port of MS Office. Instant victory.

    RIM could have done that: Build on Android, add all the RIM messaging magic and some security features: Hit.

    Nokia could have done that: Build on Android, adapt for low-end hardware (and Android *comes* from low-end hardware, at first it even didn't support touch screens), offer some high-end smartphones. They have 2500 developers working on Symbian (unbelievable but true). Discontinue Symbian, let those devs work on Nokia Android.

    I mean, Android is Open Source, isn't it? OK, all the Google stuff isn't, but base Android is. Even if you don't get access to the Google Market it's easier to be fully compatible and just get the app developers to sell through your store instead of forcing them to outright port their apps.

    I just don't get it.

    And where's the Free Android distribution? With an own market with only Open Source apps? No, there's MeeGo instead... yet.

    • And where's the Free Android distribution? With an own market with only Open Source apps? No, there's MeeGo instead... yet.

      How about this? [openmoko.org]

    • by icebike (68054)

      And where's the Free Android distribution?

      Right here: http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html [android.com]

      • Note: that's the source for the SDK. If you want the source for the full distro, you will find it here [kernel.org], including all drivers, even graphics card drivers, which is actually kind of surprising.
        • including all drivers, even graphics card drivers, which is actually kind of surprising.

          Extremely surprising. Are you sure? About the graphics drivers?

    • Microsoft could have done this: Build on Android, use Bing instead of Google, supply cloud services, offer an app market. And offer a port of MS Office. Instant victory.

      It's more complicated than that. It would also entail Java as a development language, and Eclipse as the IDE (or else adding Java support to Visual Studio). After the past history of dabbling in Java, and given the ongoing Oracle-Google lawsuit, it doesn't sound like a good idea.

    • RIM could have done that: Build on Android, add all the RIM messaging magic and some security features: Hit.

      Wouldn't that mean that RIM would have to open source their changes if they decided to use Android because of GPL? I don't think they want to divulge their secrets.

    • by Zelgadiss (213127)

      No harm really.

      Unlike Windows, Android is open source. Whatever changes comes to Android you can follow up in your own OS.

      Your OS is effectively Android (from the view point of developers and users) in all but name to be honest.

  • If the shell is going to be the same as Android you may as well run android.

  • Maybe "emulating" is a too strong words for this. But anyway, is running programs made for one platform in another. And isnt the first case, you have wine, plenty of console emulators, virtual machines, and other approachs to make layers of compatibility.

    As a clear pro, you have more apps/games/whatever. You have all the advantages of your current platform (stability, security, multitasking or some special native apps), and being able to run apps made for another. But as con you make devels to not develop

  • by Charliemopps (1157495) on Saturday February 12, 2011 @11:38PM (#35190218)
    THIS could cinch it? The company I work for moves at the pace of a glacier. We're still running windows XP, office 2003 and and just got through a 2 year approval process to finally stop using IE6. But about a month after the first Androids were out they were approved and and deployed to nearly every manager in the company. It seems pretty cut and dry to me, Blackberry is dead and apple never really had a chance anyway. Whats sad is Microsoft could have had this market sewn up a decade ago but it seems like they've spent the past 10 years figuring out just how much fail they could stuff inside a PDA sized device. The fact that Palm Inc was kicking their ass back then with what could only be described as an OS slightly more sophisticated than an Atari 2600 (minus the color) should have told them something. Android, like all good ideas is something that you look at/use and then say "Oh yea, this is what everyone should have been doing all along." If I'm paying hundreds of dollars for a small device that I'm surely going to end up destroying in my washer at some point, the damned thing better do WHAT I want WHEN I want and HOW I want. I don't need Apple or Microsoft crawling up my ass, and for christs sake I don't need MS Office or iTunes on every god damned computer on earth. I know they make you guys a lot of money but for fucks sake, if I want that shit I'll put it on myself. Microsoft at least should have learned from their success, you make your software free, easy, unobtrusive until it becomes ubiquitous. Then when the whole world is dependent on you, you bring out the Vaseline and inform them that what follows will be just a tad less uncomfortable than what they'd have to go through to migrate away from your shit.
  • by Degrees (220395)

    We're going to be dumping our BlackBerrys and our BES CALs because the Android and IOS devices can do almost as much, with far less security. The reality is that the big bosses want the latest high-tech jewelry, and the BB is The Old Stuff.

    But RIM is fixated on selling the hardware of it's BB phone. The PlayBook is a large screen and keyboard for the BB phone. Your corporate email is still kept in the BB phone - not the PlayBook. I've got bad news for you RIM: no-one wants to wear two phones, one for wo

    • Using a blackberry, internal messaging is free. For businesses this can be a big plus, as they don't have to pay for any messaging between employees.

      • by Degrees (220395)

        It is a plus, but it's not nearly enough. Due to a stupid IRS ruling, we're being pushed toward people buying their own phone and we give them a stipend for corporate use. I don't see my end users opting for a BB (or BB + PlayBook) when they can get an iPhone or Galaxy or Hero or Droid.

        I hate that the company data is going to be mixed with the user's personal data.

    • by Deviant (1501)

      RIM realised that charging people a fortune for BES was hurting them when ActiveSync was free. So they started giving a somewhat lighter version of BES 5 for free - BES 5 Express. It will do up to 2000 handsets but you can only have one server and it won't do things like high availability.

      • by Degrees (220395)

        You have a point. ActiveSync is free. But you get what you pay for - no protection from data leakage.

        If the BB OS could be a virtual machine image (encrypted, sandboxed) inside an iPhone or Android phone, I would suggest that RIM pitch the idea of having control over the corporate data as Cost Of Doing Business. I'm pretty sure a large number of corporate users would be willing to pay for that.

        But yeah, if Microsoft or Apple or Google decided to implement the same and give it away for free, RIM would be

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