President Obama was known as a Blackberry fanatic; however the more popular Apple iPhone is now his Smartphone of choice.
In January 2009, President Obama created a buzz when he moved into the White House and announced his Blackberry would be moving in with him. Since that time technology has changed and so has the President as in addition to his iPhone, its complement product, the iPad is now seen by his side.
Other Agencies Join the Movement
In addition to the president, other officials of federal agencies such as The State Department, The Army, and The Department of Veterans Affairs have Tim Hoechst to thank for this transformation. He is chief technology officer at Agilex Technologies and is the person spearheading the project to replace Blackberry's for iPhones, Microsoft Outlook for Gmail and laptops for iPads.
The Smartphone Demand
Many Federal workers have adopted to Smartphones using the iPhone or Android platform. The Blackberry has not been totally replaced, however, just like the lone cell phone some users simply prefer not to upgrade. At a federal hearing chaired by Congressman Issa probing why workers were compromising data and information by using the A.T.T. network, he finally concluded it might be better to join them than to resist them.
Blackberry could not have a better endorser than the President of the United States. Yet, you have to ask how did they lose such a cherished place? They revolutionized corporate e-mail communication. For many working people they became an appendage to their body, and even those who didn't need the device for their jobs per se, they too proudly proclaimed to be users.
Corporate email is one thing but being able to multi-task or run several applications at once, via a Smartphone is like night and day. The company has announced they would be upgrading their devices to better compete. However, based on the recent news in this article they are too little, too late.
A Lesson Learned
There was a time AOL was the dominant internet service provider. As the internet was becoming a household commodity, they were untouchable as long as consumers had to dial in to get a connection. Companies such as Pacific Bell, now A.T.T. created technologies where consumers could have comparable speeds business customers enjoyed. In the late '90s digital subscriber line (DSL) quickly replaced dial-in connections. AOL was in denial and refused to see the future or give what customers wanted. They lost key market share and even though they are popular for many households, at one time they had practically 100 percent!
Once again it is consumers who are dictating change and the Federal Government's announcement is just one barometer of the how they can make you or break you.
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Photo courtesy of The White House, Official Photographer - Peter Souza