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RIM Adds iOS, Android To BlackBerry Management Service

Faced with a terminal case of uncoolness of its BlackBerry phones, the company looks to strengthen the appeal of its respected back-end platform.

RIM has announced BlackBerry Mobile Fusion, a Mobile Device Management (MDM) product probably based on ubi-Suite from ubitexx, a company purchased by RIM in May.

RIM's BlackBerry product line has taken a market beating of late, largely because its phones are no longer viewed as desirable by users. But BlackBerry remains popular with IT because of a highly secure infrastructure, strong encryption on devices and transport, and excellent management tools.

RIM hopes BlackBerry Mobile Fusion will keep customers running their back-end products even if they switch to iOS- and Android-based devices. "BlackBerry Mobile Fusion brings together our industry-leading BlackBerry Enterprise Server technology for BlackBerry devices with mobile device management capabilities for iOS and Android devices, all managed from one web-based console. It provides the necessary management capabilities to allow IT departments to confidently oversee the use of both company-owned and employee-owned mobile devices within their organizations," said Alan Panezic, vice president of enterprise product management and marketing at RIM.

BlackBerry Mobile Fusion combines MDM functions with those of RIM's popular BlackBerry Enterprise Server. RIM lists these as the MDM capabilities in the product:

  • Asset management.
  • Configuration management.
  • Security and policy definition and management.
  • Secure and protect lost or stolen devices (remote lock, wipe).
  • User- and group-based administration.
  • Multiple device per user capable.
  • Application and software management.
  • Connectivity management (Wi-Fi, VPN, certificate).
  • Centralized console.
  • High scalability.

BlackBerry Mobile Fusion is in early beta testing. General availability is expected in March 2012.

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