Research in Motion (RIM) has announced the launch of the BlackBerry Enterprise solution and enhanced technical support services.
The BlackBerry Enterprise Server 5.0 enables a secure, centrally managed link between the smartphone and enterprise systems, applications, corporate phone environments and wireless networks.
It tightly integrates with IBM Lotus Domino, Microsoft Exchange, and Novell GroupWise, and is designed to provide highly secure access to email, organiser data, instant messaging, voice, browser and other enterprise applications. Advanced security features and administrative tools are also included for the management and centralised control of mobile devices.
Alan Panezic, vice president of platform product management at RIM, claimed that RIM was 'trying to design a product to meet the needs of the 2009 CIO', as in modern business a CIO is typically not involved and companies are not looking for a high degree of complexity.
Panezic said: “This mobilises key office platforms as security is something that is very difficult to retrofit after the event. Based on feedback from CIOs, RIM's co-CEO Mike Lazaridis has always testified that security is key, as no company will trust exposing its assets behind the firewall, but it has to be easy to manage.
"As data is moving from firewall to device people want to be sure that they are secure, but what is the biggest risk factor? People, the end user. So you have to control the device, what applications can be accessed and what systems they can touch.
"If users want to acquire their own devices then this allows us to tie them down and do policy settings, this will help CIOs who are looking to allow mobilisation with confidence."
According to RIM, benefits of the BlackBerry Enterprise Server 5.0 include advanced manageability through a new centralised administrative user interface, the ability to easily move smartphone users between separate domains with a new user migration tool and enhancements to application management and deployment capabilities.
All data transmitted between the enterprise server and smartphones is encrypted using industry standard algorithms, Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) and Triple Data Encryption Standard (Triple DES). This also allows IT policies to be adjusted to allow an organisation to match varying grades of security with their comfort level with various advanced security features supported, including PGP, S/MIME and PGP/MIME.
The enhanced technical support services are designed to offer new levels of support and support service options for small-to-medium sized businesses and large enterprise customers.
These offer comprehensive programs to include: access to support professionals for planning, management and preventative maintenance; web-based training or instructor-led webinars; certification; online newsletter; and access to the BlackBerry Expert Support Center for informational resources, self-service tools and account monitoring and management.
"We have developed a more comprehensive, flexible, scalable BlackBerry Technical Support Services program that can help small-to-mid sized businesses and large enterprises keep pace with their evolving mobility needs. The new program includes new levels of service with add-on services for customers to find the right level of support at the right price for their organisation," said Panezic.