BlackBerry’s SecuTablet is Ultra-Secure, Yet Premium Slate for the Enterprise

BlackBerry’s SecuTablet is Ultra-Secure, Yet Premium Slate for the EnterpriseBlackBerry’s initial foray in the tablet market can be best described as a failure, as the PlayBook failed to make a serious impact with consumers.  But its newest tablet, the SecuTablet, is a totally different kind of slate – it’s an enterprise-geared tablet that’s actually based on that of another company.

The BlackBerry SecuTablet was unveiled Saturday at the CeBIT tech expo in Germany, and it’s the product of a team-up involving the Canadian tech company, Samsung, and Germany’s own Secusmart, which was acquired by BlackBerry in 2014.  The SecuTablet is, in fact, a Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 that comes with features courtesy of other companies.  Secusmart’s own Security Card provides voice and data encryption support, while other important special features include IBM “app wrapping” that allows users to segregate secure work apps from not-so-secure personal apps.  It won’t come cheap, however, as BlackBerry confirmed that the SecuTablet will sell for $2,300, or more than twice the cost of the most expensive iPad Air 2 variant.

At the present, BlackBerry’s share of the mobile space is down to less than 1 percent, despite CEO John Chen’s best efforts to engineer a comeback, largely through enterprise-based products.  And it was Chen himself who made some quips at MWC 2015, hinting that a BlackBerry tablet is “not in the works,” but “on (his) mind.”  Though the SecuTablet is still a Samsung tablet in terms of specs (including operating system) and design, it is definitely an unusual, yet potentially effective way to sort-of reenter the tablet market.

The SecuTablet is currently in the process of being certified for government use by Germany’s Federal Office for Information Security.  There’s still no word, though, regarding possible North American availability.