BlackBerry Slider to be available towards end of year with Virtual Sim Solution in India

BlackBerry will launch its slider smartphone in India, announced during MWC 2015, towards the end of the ongoing financial year targeting the mid to high handset market, according to Sunil Lalvani, managing director at BlackBerry India.

While we believe that the slider will be a high-end device, it is slightly disconcerting that Lalvani refers to the device as “mid to high” handset. Hopefully, this will not be the case as BlackBerry badly require a high end device that will satisfy all-touch users, which the slider “may” satisfy.

Interestingly, he uses the term “financial year”, which is an indicator that the slider may not be available until the first quarter of 2016.

BlackBerry movirtu

Lalvani also said that BlackBerry is currently in the process of rolling out its latest virtual SIM solution in India, .

Lalvani said that the company is seeking clearances from the Indian government to launch the service in collaboration with Indian telecom service providers.

“We are seeking clearance from regulatory authorities. We are also conducting pilots for the solution with operators here.

We hope to launch the virtual SIM solution by end of the year,”

BlackBerry acquired Movirtu last year, whose Virtual SIM platform allows separate billing for voice, data and messaging on each number being used on a device. Employees can thus switch between business and personal profiles without carrying multiple devices or SIM cards, allowing for separate charges to be billed to the company and the employee. They can also switch between profiles for calls, data and messages, even when they are on their home network or roaming.

“The technology allows an individual to have both, a personal and business number on a single mobile device, with separate billing for voice, data and messaging usage on each number. People can switch between business and personal profiles easily without carrying multiple devices or SIM cards,” he said.

Lalvani said that the company is talking to Indian telecom operators for the roll out in India.

BlackBerry ESBL

The company is also seeing uptake with its carrier billing model, enhanced SIM-based licensing (ESBL), which allows corporate users to subscribe to them for a fixed monthly fee.

With the ESBL offering, enterprise customers can get BES12 integrated with their wireless monthly subscriber billing. The ESBL offering in conjunction with BES12 will support iOS, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry 10.

Currently, it’s working with Vodafone and Idea Cellular on ESBL and is hoping to rope-in two big telecom operators in the country in coming months.

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