RIM Announces BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365

By Adam Zeis on 25 Oct 2011 08:37 am EDT
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Microsoft Office 365 Cloud

Press Release

Mobilizes Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online via RIM-hosted BlackBerry Management Service; Features Advanced Web-based IT and Employee Self-Service Smartphone Management and Security Functions

WATERLOO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 25, 2011) - Research In Motion (RIM) (NASDAQ:RIMM)(TSX:RIM) today announced BlackBerry® Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365 - a new RIM-hosted online service for midsized businesses and enterprises that extends Microsoft Exchange Online to BlackBerry® smartphones, and allows organizations to self-manage their BlackBerry deployments in the cloud. An open beta for the service is launching today in over 30 countries.

"BlackBerry Business Cloud Services is an easy and cost-effective way for businesses and government agencies to extend Microsoft Office 365 to BlackBerry smartphones and manage the deployment in the cloud," said Alan Panezic, Vice President at Research In Motion. "We have been working together with Microsoft and select customers through an early access program and we are pleased to now launch an open beta for the service."

"BlackBerry Business Cloud Services will help accelerate how BlackBerry customers can realize the full benefits of the best productivity experience across the PC, browser and phone with Microsoft Office 365," said Julia White, Senior Director of Microsoft's Exchange Product Management Group. "This new service delivers valuable enhancements to Office 365 while preserving the cost and business agility benefits the cloud offers to organizations of all sizes."

Key features include:

  • Access to Microsoft Exchange Online email, calendar and organizer data from a BlackBerry smartphone
  • BlackBerry® BalanceTM technology, which presents a unified view of work and personal content on a BlackBerry smartphone while keeping the content separate and secure
  • A web-based console for IT administrators to provision, manage and secure BlackBerry smartphones from anywhere
  • Online access to employee self-service smartphone security functions, allowing users to reset a device password or remotely lock or wipe a device in the event of loss or theft

Managed service providers, systems integrators, carriers, resellers and other partners can also use the cloud service to manage BlackBerry deployments on behalf of their customers.

A number of Fortune 500 customers and several government agencies in the US participated in an early access program and are among the many organizations that already plan to use the service.

Microsoft Office 365 customers can sign up for the BlackBerry Business Cloud Services beta at www.blackberry.com/beta/businesscloud. The cloud-based service is available for no additional charge to Microsoft Office 365 Midsized Businesses and Enterprises plan subscribers and works with BlackBerry smartphones on business or consumer data plans.

More information is available at www.blackberry.com/cloudservices.

Reader comments

RIM Announces BlackBerry Business Cloud Services for Microsoft Office 365

18 Comments

Nice. BlackBerry purchased newBay and now they are offering cloud services. I'm hoping this is made available for non-business customers as well. They seem to be making some strategic purchases that they are deploying. TAT created a bunch of tools to provide for developers.

RIM purchased a ton of patents.
also purchased JayCut, on-line video editing.
Scoreloop, social gaming platform.
Obviously QNX

I'm excited about the future with this company. I think they got the memo about not just relying on the best security and email/messaging. The fact that it is the most customizable phone out there is hard to sell or explain to the average person.

Go RIM!

I think another shoe just dropped.......

Check this out. So, native email and PIM features are still AWOL from the Playbook yet a beta of these programs were shown last June. Where are they ?

What if the entire app set was put up in the cloud so any BBX device could access the single copy ? RIM may have looked at the OS7 model and said "why are we trying to code apps for all these features on the local (Playbook) BBX device, why don't we simply put it all in the cloud ?" This removes the whole issue of aggregating the data on the handset and a tablet plus it makes the security issues a whole lot simpler.

This could be why OS2 is not around yet as they have u-turned and moved to the cloud model.

Native Apps on the Playbook should be free. If 365 is given away for free, then great. However, this looks like a premium service.

i know...im not really putting too much credence into it but its messed up. a) why cant they give us a release date, or at least an idea of when or even better just get the f'ing update out. what a joke. but b) a lot of people read BGR and as you can see from the idiots that only read headlines on this site, people are just gonna see that and automatically flip out and write rimm off. how can you just write completely fake misleading information like that with no consequences....unless god forbid theres some truth to it.

QUESTION:

Can I have a BES enterprise account and then have an office 365 account on the same blackberry?

This cloud service hooks up to your Office 365 account which would replace BIS with BES for you.

If you have yet another Office 365 account, then yes you will be able to access that through BIS.

Everyone be aware this service is only for the E (enterprise) Offiec 365 plans and will not work with the P plans.

Impeccable timing on my part - I just signed up for the beta yesterday and here it is today. Awesome.

Using it right now, and it's amazing. Love having tasks and notes come OTA as well :D

No more google apps for me! :D