BlackBerry shares slide as Home Depot switches 10,000 workers to the iPhone

the home depotWith the launch of its new BlackBerry 10 platform at the end of last month, the-company-formerly-known-as-RIM is hoping to stem the tide of companies and government agencies switching over to iOS and Android devices for its employees.

A report over the weekend from Apple Insider, however, suggests it’s business as usual, with home improvement retailer Home Depot apparently planning to dump BlackBerry in favor of Apple’s iOS platform. A Home Depot representative told Apple Insider the switch will result in 10,000 employees handing in their BlackBerry handsets.

“We are replacing our current base of BlackBerry technology with iPhones,” the representative said, pointing out that the decision will affect store managers, district managers, corporate-level staffers and field ops.

As you might expect, BlackBerry shares on Monday reacted badly to the news, with their value falling by around four percent.

While the plan to switch to the iPhone may have been in place for a while, the timing of the announcement – coming less than two weeks after BlackBerry launched its long-awaited BB10 platform – couldn’t be worse.

While BlackBerry refused to comment directly on Home Depot’s decision to move across to the iPhone, company spokesperson Amy McDowell tried to downplay the news by telling Reuters in an email that “over 2,700 unique businesses in North America already registered for our BlackBerry 10 Ready Program.” She added that the Canadian company believe “BlackBerry is, and will continue to be, the best solution for corporations managing large smartphone deployments.”

But if companies continue to desert BlackBerry, thereby snubbing its new BB10 handsets, it surely spells disaster for the Ontario-based mobile maker. Throughout last year, a steady stream of companies and government agencies announced they were ending long associations with BlackBerry.

The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE), for example, announced in October it would be equipping its more than 17,000 workers with Apple’s iPhone, ending an eight-year contract with BlackBerry.

In a document obtained by Reuters at the time, ICE complained that “RIM technology….can no longer meet the mobile technology needs of the agency,” adding that the iPhone, together with a slew of Android handsets, had “leapfrogged all other competitors” in terms of the technical and functional capabilities offered by smartphones.

Of course, that was before the launch of BB10. Firms currently with BlackBerry will be taking a close look at the new operating system and handsets, with BlackBerry executives praying they like what they see.

[Image: Wiki]

Mobile

North Focals smartglasses discount cuts the price by a massive $400

Canadian startup North is hoping smartglasses will be the next big wearable. After announcing its new Focals smartglasses in late 2018, the company opened product showrooms in Brooklyn and Toronto and has made its first shipment.
Business

Apple loses battle to use Intel modems in Germany in latest clash with Qualcomm

Apple is following the Federal Trade Commission's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Gaming

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now.
Gaming

These are the must-have games that every Xbox One owner needs

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From Cuphead to Halo 5, the best Xbox One games offer something for players of every type.
Mobile

Happy Valentine’s Day! Coffee Meets Bagel dating app data may have been breached

Are you planning on using Coffee Meets Bagel to find love on Valentine's Day? If you've been using the app for a while, you'll probably want to change your password -- the company said a data breach may have taken place before May 2018.
Mobile

Worried about extra data charges? Here's how to check your usage on an iPhone

It's common to get a little nervous about nearing data limits. Keep your peace of mind by checking how much data your iPhone is using. Our guide on how to check data usage on an iPhone helps you stay in control.
Mobile

Exclusive: Take a look at what a next-generation 5G phone will look like

With 5G phones debuting at MWC in mere days, there is discussion about whether they will be clunky bricks that die after a few hours? A reference design from Qualcomm offerrs a glimpse of the future: This is what 5G phones will look like.
Mobile

New Apple patent hints clamshell-style foldable phone may be in the works

Apple has filed a patent for a foldable phone that suggests the company could be following in the footsteps of the likes of Samsung and Huawei. The patent describes a clamshell-style foldable phone with two separate sections.
Mobile

Xiaomi Mi 9 will be one of the first phones with monster Snapdragon 855 chip

Xiaomi's next major smartphone release will be the Mi 9, and the company hasn't held back in giving us a good look at the phone, revealing the design, the camera, and a stunning color.
Wearables

Galaxy Watch Active isn't official yet, but you can see it in Samsung's own app

Samsung may be about to resurrect its Sport line of smartwatches under a new name: The Galaxy Watch Sport Active. Leaks and rumors are building our picture of the device at the moment.
Mobile

Stop buying old tablets, says Samsung, buy the new Galaxy Tab S5e instead

Samsung has launched the Galaxy Tab S5e -- the E is for Essential -- a reasonably priced tablet that includes many of the features we like from the Tab A 10.5, and the Tab S4. Here's what you need to know.
Mobile

Bag yourself a bargain with the best budget tablets under $200

The battle for your budget tablet affections is really ramping up. Which tablet, costing less than $200, should be commanding your attention? We take a look at some different options for the budget-conscious.
Computing

What is Wi-Fi 6? Here's a look at the next evolution of the wireless standard

We're exploring the new naming convention for wireless standards, how it affects the devices you buy, and what the upcoming Wi-Fi generation is changing for the better.
Home Theater

Samsung accidentally leaks its new Galaxy Buds ahead of launch

It's been all but certain that Samsung would launch a successor to its Gear IconX wireless earbuds soon, but a newly leaked photo and recent FCC certification document seems to indicate that the debut is very close.