BlackBerry to leave Pakistan by the end of the year
What has been a rumor so far finally became a fact - BlackBerry is pulling out of Pakistan by the end of the year. While we previously heard that they plan to discontinue the BlackBerry Enterprise Service, the situation is even worse, since the company will completely leave Pakistan. In the end, users in that country will not get any BlackBerry services and hardware starting in January.
According to the official blog post by BlackBerry's COO Marty Beard, "the Government of Pakistan has notified BlackBerry that it has extended its shutdown order from November 30 to December 30. BlackBerry will delay its exit from the Pakistan market until then." The original shutdown order concerned the BES servers, which would not be allowed to operate any longer due to "security reasons." Beard revealed the truth in his post, writing that the Pakistani government "wanted the ability to monitor all BlackBerry Enterprise Service traffic in the country, including every BES e-mail and BES BBM message."
BlackBerry decided to leave Pakistan completely because the requirement to provide access to monitor its customers' communications did not leave them any other choice. Fortunately for the company, Pakistan is a very small market, with up to 5,000 BES users and an insignificant share of the handset market as well.