BBM Money App Launching in Indonesia
BlackBerry is to enter the peer-to-peer money transfer market.
BBM Money will soon allow owners of its handsets to send money to each other that can then be withdrawn from banks’ cash machines.
Indonesia will be first to get it – a country not typically associated with big tech launches, but it is a critical market for RIM.
There’s no question that BlackBerry still owns the bulk of the handset market share in Indonesia.
It is thought that Research in Motion has more than 50% of the Indonesian market – one of the few places in the world where BlackBerry is still king.
But a recent study from the technology research group IDC suggests that Android phones – and in particular their operating system – are fast gaining ground, with their OS now owning 52% of the Indonesian market.
Research in Motion says it is not ignoring the warning signals.
“Indonesia is very important for RIM,” Hastings Singh, the managing director of RIM’s South Asia operations, said.
“It’s a huge market for us – and it is a market that has grown significantly over the last few years.
“[But] we definitely can’t be complacent.
“So we are offering a new innovation – BBM Money which will be launched in Indonesia – first in the world – shortly. It is a peer-to-peer transfer service that anyone with a BlackBerry phone can use to transfer funds to someone else with a BlackBerry phone.”
Mr Hastings says the fact that Indonesians are some of the most social people in the world and use the BBM messenger service as much as they do is one of the key reasons behind the creation of this new application.
“Indonesians spend a large amount of time communicating with their friends and family – using tools like BBM,” he says.
“That’s why it is a focus for us to improve upon what Indonesians really value about the BlackBerry.”
Many big businesses are betting that BlackBerry phones remain the best way to reach out to the hearts and minds of Indonesian customers.
The BlackBerry phone was Indonesia’s first introduction to the smartphone. In many ways, it was the “first love” for many Indonesians.
For RIM, Indonesia is still one of the most promising markets on the horizon, and nothing so far has shown that Indonesians are going to lose their love for the BlackBerry phones any time soon.