updated 06:30 pm EST, Mon February 11, 2013
iPhones replace 10,000 Home Depot's BlackBerry phones
Reports have surfaced today that do-it-yourself mecca Home Depot will not be renewing its contract with BlackBerry, and will be replacing its fleet of 10,000 devices with iPhones. News of the shift sent BlackBerry stock into a nosedive, dropping 4.6 percent after the announcement. Home Depot did not say if the decision was made before or after the BlackBerry 10 launch, or when the initiative began.
Home Depot's move is the latest in a long string of platform shifts away from various incarnations of the BlackBerry OS to iPhones. More than 32,000 US Government devices have been replaced across several divisions of the administration.
"We have over 2,700 unique businesses in North America already registered for our BlackBerry 10 Ready Program," spokeswoman for the company Amy McDowell told Reuters in response to the story. "We are confident that BlackBerry is, and will continue to be, the best solution for corporations managing large smartphone deployments."
"We are replacing the current base of BlackBerry technology with iPhone, but these are not the mobile devices used in our stores," Home Depot Stephen Holmes said, referring to the 60,000 ruggedized Motorola push-to-talk smartphones used by retail store employees. With the existing push-to-talk iDEN protocol likely shuttering in 2013, Home Depot's future mobile moves are unclear.