BlackBerry manufacturer Research In Motion is trying to boost the credibility of its smartphones in the consumer market. The company got Carphone Warehouse to feature a BlackBerry device on the front page of its buyer’s guide this month. This was the first time a smart phone made it to the first page.
RIM signed a distribution deal with the retailer roughly a year ago to start selling BlackBerrys and continued its push to the consumer market with a deal with Phones 4u earlier this year. The company even launched a pink BlackBerry to reduce the seriousness attached to the device.
In addition to signing distribution deals with retailers, RIM is running an advertising campaign in the Metro newspaper. The free paper is mainly read by commuters, showing the shift in focus away from the corporate market.
‘We are starting off at the professional level, but our intention is to make the BlackBerry available for everyone,’ RIM’s senior director of channel marketing for EMEA, James Hart told Mobile.
RIM is pushing in with the networks too. Last week, Vodafone announced a deal with the company to collaborate on BlackBerry services for consumers. The aim of the effort is to increase the number of consumers using the devices. Consumers can now pick up a BlackBerry Pearl for free on a £25 tariff. RIM has partnerships with over 730 applications creators to make them compatible for BlackBerrys.