BlackBerry’s Virtual SIM Brings 9 Numbers on a Single SIM Card, Comes to India this Year
BlackBerry is still trying to increase sales numbers for its handsets, but earnings reports pointed out that the lion’s share of their revenue actually comes from their services division. This, among other things, has prompted the company to restructure itself as an enterprise and security company, and chances are that they’ll be able to bring profits back with this new strategy.
BlackBerry said that’s currently in talks with regulatory authorities and telecom operators in India to launch its virtual SIM solution by the end of this year. The Virtual SIM Provisioning (VSP) is a virtual identity solution for mobile operators which enables multiple numbers to be active on a single device or SIM card. And now BlackBerry is interesting in bringing this technology on Indian soil be the end of this year. Managing Director Sunil Lalvani said the following:
We are seeking clearance from regulatory authorities. We are also conducting pilots for the solution with operators here. We hope to launch the virtual SIM solution by end of the year.
He further added that the technology allows an individual to have make use of separate billing for voice, data and messaging. Thus, with this technology, conusmers can switch between business and personal profiles easily without having to resort to the traditional methods – multiple devices, SIMs or handsets with two or more SIM slots. BlackBerry’s technology will allow consumers to use as many as nine mobile numbers through a single SIM card.
BlackBerry didn’t develop this technology on its own, as it comes from virtual identity solutions provider, Movirtu, which it acquired last year. Already deployed in several African countries, the Virtual SIM technology could be coming to Europe and other Asia Pacific countries. With this new feature, the Canadian company hopes it will prove even more appealing to enterprise customers. Lavani further added:
Employees can switch between business and personal profiles easily without carrying multiple devices or SIM cards, and charges are appropriately billed to the company and the employee
He also mentioned that in India the are around 3 million dual SIM handsets sold every month, and, indeed, we’re seeing many new low-end devices carrying this particular feature. However, before you ask, all the numbers on the virtual SIM will have to be activated by a single carrier, which is a regulatory issue.