Published in Mobiles
BlackBerry pre-paid is on the horizon
by David Stellmack on05 November 2008
RIM is looking at options to enter a new market
While some have been asking for pre-pay BlackBerry devices for a long time, it seems now RIM is starting to get serious about looking at the options to bring pre-paid BlackBerry devices to those that want them.
The biggest reason that RIM is looking at this is the fact that many people want the cost control or anonymity that pre-paid devices provide or they are in developing nations where over 50 percent of people are on pre-pay cell plans. This is a market that RIM has not really had a hand in playing in, as BlackBerry devices in the past have been primarily used by business customers.
With the transition into the mainstream market space RIM has to look at all of the options to extend their reach into markets such as pre-paid and small business markets in developing nations that want the features that RIm offers with the BlackBerry, but their business is not big enough to get the credit to roll out BlackBerry devices.
Right now RIM is looking at an option where you can buy the BlackBerry device at full retail price and then you buy a pre-paid card to top up the account to use the BlackBerry service. The other option is the BlackBerry in a box option where the user buys one year of BIS service and the BlackBerry all in one package. Once the year is over, they can purchase what they need, whether it is a year subscription, monthly access, or even time-based access.
While it is obvious that this is not RIM’s target market, it is something that they need to play in to be successful long-term, and this is especially true outside of North America. An innovative plan to bring BlackBerry to the pre-paid market will be a good thing for the company long-term.