Blackberry vs. India

by Shijaz Abdulla on 13.03.2008 at 07:12

The Indian Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had announced that it will terminate the Blackberry services in India over concerns of security, since the Indian government cannot monitor the Blackberry servers as they are located in Canada.

Indian mobile operators that offer BlackBerry services, top executives of the Canadian telco Research in Motion (RIM) (the company that owns the “Blackberry” brand), security agencies and officials of the DoT are meeting on March 14 to discuss the concerns of security agencies in order to prevent having BlackBerry services terminated after the March-end deadline.

BlackBerry is famous for its push-mail services that deliver mails as and when it receives, and has over 12 million customers across the world. It is estimated that Blackberry has around 400,000 corporate customers in India.

Google and Yahoo declined to comment on the issue and Microsoft India said the issue was not of immediate concern to them.

Sumeet Gugnani, Director, Mobile Communication Business, Microsoft India, said: “Windows Mobile-enabled handheld devices and cellphones enable users to configure mails on their respective in-house (read in India) Exchange Servers if they so wish.”

I believe in a country like India where mobile internet services is inexpensive, it may be worthwhile to use Exchange Activesync push-mail services which can be hosted by the organization’s Exchange Server itself.
Update: March 15, 2008
The government announced that it is not seeking to ban mobile operators from offering Blackberry services in discussions over security concerns. However cellular operators where asked to reason with RIM to work on a possibility of legally intercepting the data.
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