Pentagon to end exclusive deal with RIM's Blackberry
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The Pentagon will no longer retain an exclusive contract with Blackberry maker Research in Motion (RIM) and has invited companies such as Apple to offer smart phones to its vast work force.
The move, announced on Thursday, comes only days after another government agency, the United States (US) Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, said it was dropping the Blackberry device altogether in favour of Apple's iPhone.
The Defence Department (DoD) insisted it would still continue to work with Blackberry phones and that "large numbers of RIM devices" would remain in use among thousands of military personnel and civilians working for the Pentagon.
"DoD is not moving away from RIM and the use of Blackberry mobile devices," spokesman Lieutenant Damien Pickart said in an email.