Reports say new QNX-based Blackberry devices will support BES along with Exchange ActiveSync, preserving investment many companies have made in RIM infrastructure.
BBX, the successor to the aging BlackBerry platform, will launch in 2012. It will support Microsoft's Exchange ActiveSync, which allows it to work with the most popular email systems used by companies and public email providers. Initially, BlackBerry Enterprise Server wasn't going to be supported, but it looks like RIM has reversed course on this decision.
The decision to drop BES support would have only upset organizations that have invested heavily in RIM's software, which includes many large enterprises. This decision never made sense to me from RIM's standpoint. The platform is on the decline and RIM needs to do what it can to not only win new users but keep existing ones. The truth is, by throwing in ActiveSync support, RIM isn't likely to win over a lot of converts, at least not until the new BBX platform has proven itself.
Removing BES support though would have left a sour taste in IT departments that had invested in the infrastructure. If those departments now had to support Exchange ActiveSync, either through purchasing Exchange, or by just digging into existing Exchange settings to enable, test, and support the protocol, why wouldn't they go all the way and arm their staff with iPhones and Android devices, which is what the employees want anyway?
Of course, doing things that make sense hasn't been RIM's strong suit lately. The PlayBook still doesn't have any sort of native email support and won't until next year. It can only help RIM though now that BBX will support BES out of the box.
Speaking of the PlayBook, the tablet's resolution of 1024 x 600 will be shared by new BBX based phones. According to The Verge, this will help ensure apps written for one platform will work on the other. That is a 16:9 aspect ratio and a higher resolution than the iPhone 4S, which is considered to be among the best looking screens available on a phone.
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