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BlackBerry Pearl 3G Launches in Indonesia

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blackberry pearl 9100

We have talked a lot about RIM’s presence in Indonesia and the success of BlackBerry in Southeast Asia. The powerful and professional BlackBerry brand goes a long way when selling young Indonesians on the smartphone. Also, in Southeast Asia, smartphones are an effective means of getting Internet connectivity where land lines are difficult to implement.

Today RIM announced the BlackBerry Pearl 3G launch in Indonesia. There doesn’t seem to be any mention of price or carrier availability, but these announcements should be coming shortly.

Until then, read our review of the BlackBerry Pearl 3G.

Yahoo! Launches Messenger One App Beta in Indonesia

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BlackBerry is making some serious headway in Indonesia and Yahoo! are right there to ride the wave. Today, Yahoo! Messenger One app beta was launched and it’s a pretty feature-packed BlackBerry app. Yahoo! Messenger One is an all-in-one universal address book and communications hub that helps users to find, connect and communicate with friends whether it’s email, IM or SMS.
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The Success of BlackBerry in Indonesia

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[Click here or the image to watch the video]

Indonesia is a new and potentially huge market for RIM. With a population of 238 million, the potential for BlackBerry subscribers is enormous. Companies such as InMobi have tracked the success of RIM in Indonesia and mainstream media have covered the challenges RIM faces expanding into this region.
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BlackBerry App World now available in Indonesia and Singapore

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Now that Indonesia and Singapore have such devices as the Curve 8520, Bold and Storm, App World is the next obvious move.

Users from these countries were elated when we posted about How to Get Free Apps from App World in Any Country, but now they can do it legitimately and get paid apps as well.

According to the press release, users can find applications “specifically built for the region.” Some Indonesia specific apps include Taxi Indonesia Dialer, Makan and Caripromo. Users from Singapore will enjoy applications such as iCab SG. Foyage, Spionard and Pintas are also available for users in both Indonesia and Singapore.

Further evidence of BlackBerry success in Indonesia from InMobi

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Indonesia Monthly Growth in Traffic

Not too long ago BlackBerry Cool published an article regarding the success of RIM in Indonesia. The article highlighted the fact that the BlackBerry is popular for two main reasons: its price point and its brand reputation.

Data from Indonesia’s largest mobile advertising network, InMobi, confirms the above notion that BlackBerry is beating iPhone in Indonesia, a country home to over 237 million people. From January 2009 to June 2009, mobile ad requests on Blackberry phones increased by 842%, compared to mobile ad requests on Indonesia iPhones, which increased only by 205%. See the above graph for a better picture of how the two devices differ in usage.

For RIM to further succeed in Indonesia and the rest of the developing world, they are going to have to launch more low-end devices. While the 8520 did an excellent job of satisfying some of the demand for a cheaper smartphone, there is still plenty of opportunity for an even cheaper device. A BlackBerry with the most basic of functionality would still provide a smartphone experience the developing world would cherish.

The challenges and opportunities RIM faces in Southeast Asia

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Inside the Roxy Mas IT Mall. Roxy Mas is the largest cell phone shopping mall in Indonesia. Hundreds of shops sell second-hand phones. [Courtesy]

Indonesia comprises 17,508 islands in Southeast Asia and has an estimated population of around 237 million people, making it the fourth most populous country in the world.

Back in 2004, RIM began selling BlackBerry devices through the country’s main provider Indosat and growth has been tremendous. In 2008, BlackBerry sales rose 550% year-on-year. There are now more than 350,000 users across the region, a number that could reach 1 million by the end of this year, according to Marc Einstein, an industry manager at research and consulting firm Frost and Sullivan.

While 1 million may seem insignificant compared to the estimated 28 million BlackBerry users worldwide, the growth rate and potential are enough to make Indonesia a very lucrative market.

While we’re on the subject of smartphone growth, the iPhone has been fairing very poorly in Indonesia. In developing countries and countries with a smaller GDP, price point is key. The iPhone doesn’t have the price flexibility that the BlackBerry does and therefore has seen only around 15,000 users in Indonesia, a relatively insignificant number.
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