Motorola Droid Pro in Stores November 18th, BlackBerry Almost Done?

Motorola’s new Droid Pro goes on pre-sale tomorrow, November 9th for $179.99 with new two-year contract and $100 rebate. The smartphone itself hits stores on November 18th. This will be one of the first Android powered smartphones to compete against Research In Motion’s (RIM) BlackBerry line of smartphones. BlackBerrys are designed for business and so is the Droid Pro.

The Droid Pro ships with QuickOffice for productivity and has the coveted ‘world phone’ designation, which means that it will work on networks worldwide with the appropriate roaming plan. Many BlackBerrys are world phones as well. Motorola has built an Android smartphone with business users in mind but how many business users are going to choose this over a BlackBerry? I actually think quite a few. The Droid Pro is a solid device even though its touchscreen resolution is only 480 x 320 pixels. Users switching from BlackBerrys won’t notice but if you’ve used an iPhone 4 or comparable Android device, it might take you a while to get used to it.

RIM has been losing smartphone market share in the United States at a steady pace since Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android came out. Sure, the company shipped more BlackBerrys last quarter than it ever has before, but Apple shipped more iPhones and the combined sales of the different Android smartphone models on the market were massive. Further adding to RIM’s problems is the fact that large companies are starting to rethink their needs and options for employees’ phones. Unfortunately, the BlackBerry doesn’t look like it is the answer anymore.

Bank of America and Citigroup are currently trying out the iPhone 4. If the companies decide to switch, that is more than 542,000 BlackBerry users and half a million iPhone 4s for Apple to sell. Other companies are considering letting their employees use their own smartphones for work. Why not? Android and iOS both do email quite well now. That was the BlackBerry’s selling point in the beginning. Not anymore.

Will the Droid Pro find success? I think so. Even if it doesn’t take off as a popular ‘business’ phone, its world phone abilities certainly set it in another category. If you travel internationally a lot and use Verizon’s CDMA network, you need a world phone to use on the go.

The Droid Pro just the first rock thrown by Android in the BlackBerry’s direction? Do Android phones have the potential to make a breakout in the business world too? Let me know what you think.

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