BlackBerry And Samsung Team Up To Secure Galaxy Devices

BlackBerry and Samsung are teaming up to improve the security and management of Android-based Galaxy smartphones and tablets by offering a product featuring the best of the BlackBerry Enterprise Service (BES) and Samsung Knox platforms to their joint enterprise customers.

The two companies say that by combining the application, device and data management capabilities of BES and BlackBerry’s secure network with the hardware-level security of Knox, businesses will be better protected against threats and better placed to separate personal and corporate data.

This combination, they say, will help public sector organisations and companies in regulated industries better manage their mobile workforce.

Samsung BlackBerry partnership

“BlackBerry has developed a very close partnership with Samsung and we’re committed to deepening the interaction between our engineering and product development teams for the long-term,” says John Sims, president of Global Enterprise Services at BlackBerry.

“It is a natural progression in our path to providing our customers with more alternatives to meet their evolving mobile needs. Samsung Knox offers a number of hardware and software security features and our partnership allows us to tightly integrate these capabilities with BES12.”

BlackBerry will hope the partnership allows it to gain traction among companies using Samsung devices as it attempts to continue its ongoing recovery.  Once the leader in enterprise smartphones, BlackBerry has endured a difficult number of years as its market share was eroded by the likes of Apple and Samsung. It has implemented a restructuring programme involving thousands of job losses and a renewed focus on enterprise devices, services and its QNX embedded operating system.

Samsung enterprise push

For Samsung, the addition of BlackBerry security will help legitimise its current enterprise push, providing assurances to businesses that it can protect corporate devices and data. The company is looking towards the enterprise to offset any potential decline in consumer smartphone sales, which have been the bedrock of its recent success.

Samsung Knox has been cleared by the US government to handle classified information, while it has also received UK government approval, allowing public sector workers to use Knox-protected devices. Knox 2.0 was released earlier this year, featuring two-factor authentication, a new app marketplace and dual billing. The platform has also been integrated into Android version 5.0 Lollipop.

“We share the goal to provide enterprises with the most secure mobility solutions through this partnership with BlackBerry,” explains Injong Rhee, senior vice president of Samsung’s Knox Business Group. “Samsung Knox is focused on delivering secure mobility solutions to enterprises and, combined with BES12, we will offer more options for customers that need enhanced levels of security on Android devices.”

The combined service will be available in early 2015 and the partnership will see Samsung resell BES 12 and BlackBerry offer Knox support to its ‘Gold’ customers.

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Steve McCaskill

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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