One of the big surprises this year at BlackBerry World 2011 took place during Tuesday's keynote presentation, when Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer took to the stage. In the video above you can watch Ballmer's full presentation where he talks about Microsoft working with RIM to enhance the cloud-based services available to BlackBerry, with a primary focus on Bing.
If you want to skip the talking and get to the goods, you can jump to 7m35s for a video depicting where Microsoft and RIM want to go with Bing on BlackBerry, and to 10m35s for a live demo of some of the new Bing on BlackBerry features that they already have working (including location awareness and search right from the locked homescreen - swipe to search).
All in all, I really like where RIM is going here. The more we can get our BlackBerry devices doing the better. My only hope is that while Microsoft + RIM are going to work closely to bring more cloud-based experiences to BlackBerry handsets, that users who may not be Bing fans can turn off these core OS integrated services if they choose too. I like having the option of using all of these Microsoft services, but I don't want to be forced to.
Be sure to watch the video above and be sure to sound off in the comments with your thoughts. Do you like the direction things are going here??