Blackberry looks to regain its crown with made-in-Indonesia Aurora
By Masyitha Baziad March 14, 2017
- Touted as the most secure Android smartphone in the world due to its DTEK technology
- BlackBerry Aurora can be purchased through pre-order for US$262
IN A bid to regain its glory Indonesia, PT BB Merah Putih launched BlackBerry’s newest smartphone BlackBerry Aurora on March 9.
The smartphone comes with Android 7.0 Nougat and has a 5.5-inch screen and 4GB RAM memory It is equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core 1.4GHz processors, as well as a 3,000 mAh Li-ion battery that can hold up to 20-hours of mixed-use and 30-hours of standby time
To add its appeal for Indonesian consumers, who are notorious in having more than one smartphone, this is the first dual-SIM BlackBerry handset. It also fulfils the requirement of 30% local content (TKDN) for smartphones sold in Indonesia.
BB Merah Putih vice president of sales and marketing Stanly Widjaja says that the company through its partnership with a local manufacturer is manufacturing 100,000 units of the smartphone every month, and has set a monthly sales target of 100,000 units as well.
“I am very optimistic about this BlackBerry smartphone and the Indonesian market. I think people will get excited about the comeback of BlackBerry.
“This new device is designed specifically to fulfil the needs of Indonesian customers. It comes with with full entertainment features packaged in a premium device that also delivers the productivity, privacy and security that the BlackBerry brand is known for.”
The first smartphone manufactured under PT BB Merah Putih comes equipped with a 13-megapixel, dual-tone LED flash for its main camera, and an eight-megapixel front camera with LED flash.
Designed and manufactured in Indonesia, BlackBerry Aurora is dubbed as the most secure Android smartphone in the world, thanks to BlackBerry Limited’s DTEK technology which can track and notify users if someone is trying to take pictures or videos without the user’s knowledge, turning the microphone on, sending a text messages, or accessing the user’s contacts or location.
The technology also allows BlackBerry Aurora to have extra security compared to other Android-based smartphones, in order to save users from malware, data breaches, and any attempt to hack or tamper with the operating system.
In the storage department, BlackBerry Aurora is equipped with 4GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, and up to 2TB of additional storage through the MicroSD slot.
BlackBerry Aurora is available in black, gold, and silver colour and can be purchased through pre-order for Rp3,499,000 (US$262 or RM1,165.8).
“The brand is here to stay”
In September 2016, in order to focus on the software business, BlackBerry Limited released its smartphone business and licensed it out to Indonesia’s PT Tiphone Mobile Indonesia, part of Telkom Group, through the newly formed PT BB Merah Putih.
"BlackBerry is no longer just about the smartphone, but the smart in the phone. Working with trusted partners to extend the reach and availability of our secure mobility software remains a key focus for the Mobility Solutions unit and this joint venture is just one of our next steps in making our software licensing strategy successful," BlackBerry’s executive chairman and chief executive officer John Chen said in 2016.
"BB Merah Putih is comprised of companies with extensive background in providing innovative mobile services to their customers, making the newly formed joint venture the perfect partner to offer trusted BlackBerry secure mobile software that is available exclusively to Indonesian customers,” he added.
The agreement enabled BB Merah Putih to source, distribute, and promote BlackBerry-branded devices that use BlackBerry’s secure Android software and applications.
“I have always recognised the importance of the Indonesian market for BlackBerry. I remember I was in Jakarta in June 2014 for the launch of BlackBerry’s first smartphone since I became the CEO of the company, BlackBerry Z3 or the codename Jakarta.
“Indonesia also has the largest user base of my favourite app BlackBerry Messenger (BBM). It is with your continuous support that BlackBerry can turn around and transform itself to a leading security software company we are today,” Chen says.
He adds that knowing how much people love the BlackBerry smartphone, and as part of the BlackBerry future, the company will continue to deliver smartphones to the Indonesian consumers.
“We sincerely congratulate BB Merah Putih on the new BlackBerry Aurora, the latest device launched under our software licensing strategy and new model for delivering the ‘smart’ in the smartphone,” BlackBerry Mobility Solutions senior vice president and general manager Alex Thurber says.
“Our customers in Indonesia are very important to BlackBerry, and as we focus on software innovation, we are very excited about our partnership with BB Merah Putih to deliver high-quality devices with the BlackBerry security DNA our customers are so familiar with,” he concludes.
Next page: Rocky road ahead for BlackBerry