It's not new to us that many companies and indeed governments are opening its doors to BOYD (Bring Your Own Device) users. We will also now see the Pentagon allow the U.S. military to start using other devices, specifically the iPhone and Android devices. But the Pentagon also says that it will continue to support a large number of BlackBerry phones.
However, at the same time, the Pentagon is also looking offer a contract to companies who can provide software that will allow them to manage and monitor all the different devices. BYOD is a reality, so while it's not ideal for RIM to lose that Pentagon exclusivity with BlackBerry, RIM can step up and offer their Mobile Device Management Service, Mobile Fusion. It serves the purpose that the Pentagon are looking for to manage Android, iOS and BlackBerry devices.
The contract will start with least 162,500 devices, eventually increasing to 262,500. In the long run, the Pentagon would like to support 8 million devices. So, if RIM were successful in their bid to the DOD, it would certainly make losing the exclusivity with the Pentagon less of a blow.