Palm to offer owners Blackberry software

Handheld PC giants Palm and Research In Motion have teamed up on a deal which will let owners of the Treo 650 — Palm’s latest and most powerful smartphone — connect with BlackBerry’s feted e-mail and calendar software.

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By  Chris Whyatt Published  October 23, 2005

Handheld PC giants Palm and Research In Motion have teamed up on a deal which will let owners of the Treo 650 — Palm’s latest and most powerful smartphone — connect with BlackBerry’s feted e-mail and calendar software. The deal means BlackBerry Connect software will show up as an option on Palm’s VersaMail e-mail client from early next year, and is a coup for both companies in expanding their user and subscriber base. Palm already has several software contracts including Microsoft Exchange, IBM’s Lotus and Domino, Good Technology’s GoodLink software, Intellisync, Seven, and Visto in Europe, but wants to expand its reach further. “The long-term goal is to get e-mail available on every Treo with every server,” said Joe Fabris, director of Palm wireless marketing. Palm reassured users that any future Treo smartphone products with secure, push-based wireless e-mail (using the Palm operating system) will also be devised to access the BlackBerry Connect option via the BlackBerry Enterprise Server. The new solution will also enable wireless calender synchronisation, IT policy enforcement, remote address lookup of corporate e-mail directory, and support for Microsoft Exchange and IBM Lotus Domino — although Palm has not yet decided to include BlackBerry Connect on Microsoft Windows-based Palm devices. For enterprise mobility in the Middle East this latest move is not likely to have any immediate impact as most incumbent operators in the Middle East do not currently allow real push e-mail services to be used through their networks. In the UAE, Nokia has been working on providing a push e-mail service, with users trialing the technology at this year’s Gitex event. Etisalat, was unavailable for comment as IT Weekly went to press. “We are incredibly keen to push ‘push e-mail’. The Treo 650 is designed for just that; but RIM can’t make great inroads here at the moment because it has to use local networks to push remote mobile e-mails through,” said Stuart Maughan, general manager for Palm in the Middle East. He pointed out that, in the main, smartphone users in the region currently ‘push’ e-mails through SIM cards from overseas operators. “But it’s definitely a good thing for us to have BlackBerry on board,” he added.

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