This is great news. Microsoft’s Office 365 Online Services can once again play nicely with RIMs Blackberry mail service.
“BlackBerry Business Cloud Services is available at no additional charge to Microsoft Office 365 Enterprise Plan subscribers. This secure service, hosted by Research In Motion (RIM), directly links Microsoft® Exchange Online with BlackBerry smartphones to offer reliable, mobile access to synchronized email, calendar, contacts, tasks and memo pads.”
The previous iteration of Microsoft Online Services had a chargeable BES (Blackberry Enterprise Server) element hosted by MS which, after a little while became free of charge.
In the run up to Office 365 being launched, the decision was made that RIM would take over hosting the Blackberry services which seemed sensible to me. The odd part is that Office 365 went live in July 2011 but RIM said it would be at least 6 months until they were ready.
This led to a scenario where many people were “waiting until BES arrives” before genuinely evaluating Office 365, particularly in the mid-market space. It’s great to see that this is available and will give our teams another great thing to talk about with our clients
Go and find out more info here:
and/or grab the Technical PDF, which compares the different flavours of Blackberry Services here: