Irish Government Drops BlackBerry in Favor of iPads (All 300 of them)
It's not about the number. It's about the product.
TDs told to buy their own iPads, Leinster House to drop support for BlackBerrys
Although a tender to buy 300 iPads for Ireland's TDs and senators has been scrapped, the Oireachtas Commission has confirmed to Siliconrepublic.com that it has come up with a mechanism whereby TDs will buy their own iPads and be supported by its ICT unit. The commission has also confirmed it will be dropping support for BlackBerry devices next summer.
In September, we reported that the Oireachtas Commission had put out a tender to acquire 300 iPad devices in a project worth between €150,000 and €200,000.
For budgetary reasons the tender has been scrapped.
However, a new mechanism has been agreed upon with telecoms provider Vodafone, whereby the Oireachtas Commission will buy iPads in bulk and TDs and senators will refund the cost to the ICT unit.
The recommended iPad model will be the 32GB iPad with Wi-Fi and cellular, which costs €739 on the Apple Store.
In that way, TDs and senators can say to the taxpayer that they paid for the device out of their own pockets. Politicians who buy the tablet computers under this mechanism will be provided with IT support for their devices by the Oireachtas ICT team.
Another option is that TDs, senators or their parliamentary staff can receive iPads only as an advance replacement to the one of the three PCs provided to them provided the PCs are reaching the end of their workable life. It is understood that up to 70pc of computers assigned to TDs and their staff have at least three to four years of lifetime left.
Politicians and their staff who buy iPads this way will have to return them to the ICT unit when they leave office.
Print on demand coming to Leinster House
One of the reasons the Oireachtas Commission appears determined to pursue the rollout of iPads is a ‘print on demand’ strategy with respect to parliamentary documents.
An Oireachtas Commission spokesperson confirmed the move was part of a strategy to reduce print production costs throughout Leinster House.
The idea is that instead of every office or department having printers, a smaller number of strategically located printers around Leinster House and Dail Eireann will be able to detect a member’s iPad via Apple’s AirPrint wireless technology and print a document from the iPad.
Squashing out BlackBerrys
TDs and senators have also been told that the Oireachtas Commission is to cease support for BlackBerry mobile devices during 2013, and TDs and senators have been advised they should no longer purchase a BlackBerry device if they wish to access Oireachtas email.
While the Oireachtas spokesperson has not provided an exact date for the cease of support for BlackBerry devices, it is believed to be happening around June or July 2013.
One of the reasons BlackBerry support is being dropped is the Oireachtas ICT unit no longer wishes to pay to keep a BlackBerry Enterprise Server running when no such server is required for Android or iPhone devices.
“The provision of support for BlackBerrys carries the additional cost of two separate servers, power, cooling, administration and annual support,” the spokesperson explained.
The spokesperson also pointed out that the number of BlackBerrys supported by the ICT team has been reduced from 180 to just 61.
“At present, email can be accessed on iPhones and BlackBerry devices and we will begin testing alternative platforms early in 2013 so that members will not be limited to just iPhones for access to email,” the spokesperson confirmed.
- 12-14-12, 10:51 PM #3
- 12-14-12, 10:53 PM #4One of the reasons BlackBerry support is being dropped is the Oireachtas ICT unit no longer wishes to pay to keep a BlackBerry Enterprise Server running when no such server is required for Android or iPhone devices.
- 12-14-12, 11:23 PM #5
- 12-15-12, 01:51 AM #7
This just in: Irish gov security has been breached
Why can't they just be honest, they don't want BB anymore because its not hip enough. Can't wait till BB10 is a hit and they come back. Once you go black.... well you know the rest
The Smartphone Era is evolving into the Handheld Computer Era. Soon, very soon, the same operating system that is used on desktops will be held in your hand.
- 12-15-12, 03:04 PM #14
- 12-15-12, 03:25 PM #15
Why are these articles even written? Why do we care what they use? Where are the articles about what kind of pens and paper they use? What about what gas stations they fill their cars up at? It makes no sense to me. 300? really?
- 12-15-12, 04:42 PM #17
I have just had to spend some of my weekend (personal time) dealing with inappropriate posts and petty squabbling between members again. Other moderators are also having their time disrupted.
Cut the personal comments, debate the topic and products not the other members regardless how tempting a cheap shot may seem. The season of goodwill is approaching and we would prefer voluntary harmony rather than enforced by time away from the forums.
- 12-15-12, 10:32 PM #19
- 12-16-12, 07:04 AM #21
If BB10 is such a big improvement, RIM should not be forced to bribe their customers to upgrade. Price deductions are a method to speed up adaption.
I am not saying BB10 is a bad product. I'm saying that giving the product away is sending a message that it's not good enough to pay for the upgrade. Plus the line between consumer and enterprise security has been greyed out so much that the line is practically invisible. Which is more important - your own privacy or a company's document?
RIM will be offering customers who purchase BlackBerry 10 smartphones the ability to trade up their existing BlackBerry Enterprise Server licenses on a one for one basis for free, until December 31, 2013.** The license trade up offer will allow customers to secure and manage their BlackBerry 10 smartphones with BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10. Customers will be able to access an online tool for the BlackBerry Enterprise Server License Trade Up in January 2013.
- CrackBerry Master
12-17-12, 03:14 AM #24
- 1,250 Posts
RIM needs quick adoption to get back into a market where they've basically lost. Not to mention, free upgrades keep the customer happy and loyal. It's always easier to appease existing customers than to make new ones.
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