RIM targets SME BlackBerry users

RIM targets SME BlackBerry users

Enterprise software streamlined for smaller companies

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) has unveiled BlackBerry Professional Software aimed at smaller organisations.

The offering is a streamlined version of RIM's BlackBerry Enterprise Server software designed for up to 30 wireless users.

It offers a set of wireless communications and collaboration tools that integrate with the most commonly used email servers.

RIM said that BlackBerry Professional Software allows user-friendly wireless access to email, organiser, internet and intranet applications while maintaining security.

"Small and medium-sized firms have many of the same business requirements as larger enterprises, but often require more streamlined administration features, " said Carrie MacGillivray, senior analyst for SMB markets and mobility at IDC.

"It has become increasingly important for smaller companies to be able easily and cost-effectively to deploy and manage mobile technology solutions in order to remain competitive and responsive to customers.

"An offer that combines a mobility solution with enterprise grade middleware, and an intuitive user interface, will resonate with this increasingly mobile segment."

The BlackBerry Professional Software suite installs on the same server as the email system, saving customers the cost of additional hardware and operating system licences. It integrates directly with Microsoft Exchange or IBM Lotus email servers.

To assist smaller companies that lack the expertise of a dedicated IT department, it also includes a pre-install assistant utility that performs a technical assessment of the environment and provides a recommended configuration.

BlackBerry Professional Software is priced at $499 for five users and $849 for 10 users. Either package is expandable to support up to 30 wireless users with the purchase of additional licences.