BlackBerry not worried about Boeing’s self-destructing smartphone

Media reports are calling it a potential BlackBerry killer, but the Waterloo, Ont.-based smartphone manufacturer doesn’t appear to be concerned.

According to published reports and a filing posted to the web side of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), aircraft manufacturer Boeing is developing the Boeing Black (H8V-BLK1), designed to be a smartphone primarily for secure communication between government agencies and their contractors.

Boeing said last year it was working on an Android smartphone, and the FCC filing offers more insight. The device will be a dual-band SIM phone supporting GSM, WCDMA and LTE using Miro SIM cards, and will also feature an HDMI port, USB, WiFi and Bluetooth.

The handset would appear to target a key segment of BlackBerry’s core market – enterprise customers with a need for highly secure communications. However, Jeff Holleran, senior director of enterprise product management at BlackBerry, told CDN the Boeing phone isn’t really a threat to their business.

“From what I’ve seen in the press, Boeing is working on a self-destructing phone,” said Holleran. “That’s something that’s super niche, and isn’t something the customers we’re looking at from regulated industries would be interested in going after.”

The self-destruction refers to the Boeing phone’s non-serviceable design, which would see the hard drive wipe and the phone become unusable if the sealed back was removed or the phone was tampered with.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
A veteran technology and business journalist, Jeff Jedras began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the booming (and later busting) Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal, as well as everything from municipal politics to real estate. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada. He would go on to cover the channel as an assistant editor with CDN. His writing has appeared in the Vancouver Sun, the Ottawa Citizen and a wide range of industry trade publications.

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