At this point in time, a BlackBerry is just about standard issue equipment for anyone who needs to be easy to reach. There are a number of other options, most notably Windows Mobile smartphones, but the BlackBerry remains the tool of choice for business users. The company did this by catering their products to business users- their phones are great with email, are easy to use, and are packed with productivity features. In order to make the products even more attractive to coporate types the company left out many of the things that might be a security risk, like a camera, as well as leisure features, like a media player.
Despite the restrain BlackBerry showed in sticking to phones aimed at professionals, the consumer market was just too attractive for them to stay away. The company had a proven formula, so with a few additions and some polishing they could have a very capable phone on their hands, something that could compete with all the smartphones on the market.