Podcasts

Vector 41: Mergers and accusations

Devices

Microsoft ‘keeping an eye’ on BlackBerry according to Bloomberg

Editorial

What Microsoft buying Nokia means for BlackBerry

CrackBerry Polls

CrackBerry Asks: Are you picking up a new tablet or sticking with your BlackBerry PlayBook?

News & Rumors

BlackBerry Internet Service - MTN gives the facts regarding unlimited plans and BBM

News & Rumors

BlackBerry users grin smugly as iOS update wreaks Exchange server havoc; opens passcode vulnerability

News & Rumors

BlackBerry offering one year of forwarding services for BlackBerry.net email accounts

News & Rumors

Three UK offers free BIS for a year with Pay As You Go BlackBerry smartphones

News & Rumors

Thorsten Heins says sorry for todays BlackBerry outage in Europe and Africa

News & Rumors

Some Vodafone customers experiencing BlackBerry outage *Update* - looks like it is back up and running

News & Rumors

Microsoft signs licensing agreement with RIM for exFAT file technology

Help, How-To & Tips

How to add a Level 1 notification on your BlackBerry

News & Rumors

No, RIM hasn't handed their BES encryption keys over to India

News & Rumors

Microsoft announces the Surface tablet [the competition]

Help, How-To & Tips

Dear Berry: PC Sync still not working with my PlayBook!

Help, How-To & Tips

How to sync multiple Gmail calendars on your BlackBerry PlayBook

News & Rumors

BlackBerry Internet Service down again? (Update: Not RIM's fault)

News & Rumors

Sprint rolling out BIS 4.1 tomorrow?

News & Rumors

BlackBerry Internet Service 4.1 goes live in Europe

PlayBook Apps

Conqu for the BlackBerry PlayBook now adds ConquSync & desktop version in beta

< >

Microsoft drops charge for syncing BlackBerry with Office 365

Office 365 and BB
By IsaacKendall on 17 Mar 2011 09:09 am EDT
0
loading...
4
loading...
73
loading...

On Wednesday Microsoft announced on their Office 365 blog that they will be dropping the additional cost they were charging customers to sync their BlackBerry smartphones calendar and address book.

We have exciting news for Microsoft Online Services customers. We are in the process of updating pricing for Hosted BlackBerry Service for Exchange Online to make this service available free of charge. Starting today, BlackBerry mobile e-mail for new Exchange Online customers is now free through our Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS). For existing customers, we expect to be able to provide more information later this month on how you can take advantage of this change.

If you're unfamiliar with Office 365, it's Microsoft's competitor to Google's business cloud environment Google Apps. Microsoft Office 365 delivers the power of cloud productivity to businesses of all sizes, helping to save time, money and free up valued resources. Read more at the Microsoft blog.

Microsoft Office 365 Blog

Reader comments

Microsoft drops charge for syncing BlackBerry with Office 365

9 Comments
Sort by Rating

If Microsoft didn't create a charge (and then drop it), I never would have even known Office 365 existed or what it was for.

Even if I had ever heard of this Microsoft 365 I would never have used in since syncing with Gmail has always been free... Not to mention I don't care for Microsoft at all reguardless of if it is free or not.

I drive a Volvo S40. I must service my car. That car has QNX inside, as all cars do. When I service my car, I bring it to the dealer. The dealer pulls the car into the service bay, hooks up to the system under the dash via a controller port (as all cars have). All diagnostics are run and there is a visual inspection. This should be done on every level of service, including an oil change, but most places do not have the capabilities to offer such service…since the ability to read Volvo-specific information requires them buying a Volvo-specific unit.

That’s a huge negative in today’s world, but a current reality.

I use a Blackberry phone. I use the web, email, navigation and tie it all to my Google account for convenience. At times I forward Office documents to my phone so I can keep them, review them, modify them, you name it. I also use this phone as my main communication device (email when I am not on my laptop). I do not have a home phone, it is redundant. It is unneeded. With my phone it is also my main music player (except for my iPod attached to my car stereo). My car stereo has Bluetooth, of which I use constantly. I either tie my phone to it and stream my audio there, make calls, have it read my texts to my while driving, whatever, but it is great. Problem is, I had to go aftermarket for the stereo…and none of it ties to my cars OS at all, so anything happening to my car is not combined to my phone or my Google account. Sure, I have a calendar, sure I forward events to my work calendar, but I sometimes forget and I might miss those meetings. Not good. But nothing supports that yet.

I use Office at work. I use Outlook here as well. In order to retrieve my work email, I must either remotely log in to my work email or have it tied to my Blackberry. Problem with tying my work Blackberry is the corporate rules and regulationss for that require me to use a separate phone. Not cool. Not carrying two devices, either. So if I need work files, I either need to send them home to my email and log in or be at my desk. I travel with work and having stuff ‘in the cloud’ would be so efficient….but right now, we don’t support that. Encryption is our concern; security, since we deal with credit card information and social security numbers and more….lots of stuff for security reasons I cannot ‘leave open access’ to.

So what if I were able to tie these into each other somehow? Let me illustrate.

I need to take my Volvo in for service. I know I need an oil change because my car put that on my BB calendar, which is tied to my MS Office calendar at work at the same time. I can schedule that accordingly. Since all of my contacts are available in my car and phone and email at the same time (cloud based), it is all synced up. I will be at my desk when the reminder pops up to tell me to go to my oil change. From there I have navigation in my phone that is also in my car showing me where to go….and if I am running late, I can simply call ahead from the car/phone by simply saying “Call destination”; this is known due to my destination I am traveling on my GPS and calendar.

I reach them on the phone and tell them I am running a few minutes behind (my GPS knows this due to live traffic conditions) and they pull the diagnostics from my car while we’re on the phone and I am driving, since they need them and are busy and I am running behind. Because I am using QNX and everything runs on QNX, they can do that and they have access to the account because I gave them access remotely to the car. When I walk in the door, they already have my diagnostics remotely because I gave them access while driving by accepting the command “Accept remote diagnostics from destination” and am ready to work on my car. They noticed that I have another small issue beyond the oil change and said it needs to be taken care of soon. They saw on my remote calendar (remember, I gave them access to see available times only) I had time later in the week to take care of it and I accepted that request on my phone while I was waiting for service to be performed. This service appointment was placed into my cloud calendar that appears on my phone and my calendar at work, so I did not need to add it. I will also get that reminder when the time comes, just like my oil change.

From there I decide to head home and want to pick up dinner for the family. I call my wife and ask what she wants and she tells me. The QNX OS has stored her request into a voice database. I ask the system to “record remote voice” so when I pull up to the drive-thru window and say “Replay remote voice from previous call” the drive through attendee hears it and places the order. No need for me to mess up her order, right? I receive the order and since I am NFC equipped, the sales amount is automatically deducted from my bank account through the NFC chip I have. Needing to pull out my wallet can sometimes be a literal pain in the butt, as I have to shift weight, reach back, seatbelt gets in the way….then reverse the process. No thanks, this is so much easier with the NFC.

Now to head home. I simply speak the command I want for music and listen as I relax from the day. I also want to hear the daily weather report for the next three days; I’m off with my wife and want to know what to pack for the weekend. I hear the report and ask the system to “Send requested weather report to calendar for 8:30pm today” so I can remember what to pack for my trip when I relax after dinner.

Ahh life is good.

Now I am on my trip with my wife and I realize that I forgot to finish a report I was working on. Oops! It is due the moment I get back. So I go to the cloud, find the report, make changes on my Playbook and save it. Since I decided to forego having my phone for this trip to truly have a disconnect, at least I remembered to bring my Playbook…..I wanted to be able to watch movies and have my music I always listen to. All of this is on the cloud, anyways. This way I needed only one device, not two and I still have access for everything.

And the best part is since I am using the Blackberry system, I am using less data than anything else on the market. And Microsoft is giving me everything I need for productivity. QNX is allowing me to completely integrate with all of the functions of my car, phone and cloud.

Yes, life is good

Longest post ever? But after reading this... I want all those features :P sounds like fun to setup all of that... Heheh