Research In Motion Limited (RIM) announced that it will expand the BlackBerry(tm) solution by offering a secure software application for viewing email attachments with BlackBerry Wireless Handhelds. RIM also plans to extend its development environment with software tools to enable developers to create additional document handling applications for the BlackBerry solution. This offering will complement the existing wireless email features and allow customers to more efficiently manage their documents while mobile.
"BlackBerry has been embraced by thousands of organizations as the leading wireless email solution for corporate and government sectors because it delivers a behind-the-firewall solution that is complete, secure and manageable," said Mike Lazaridis, President and Co-CEO at Research In Motion. "Document handling applications are a natural extension for BlackBerry and will further drive the productivity and convenience benefits already enjoyed by BlackBerry users today."
This attachment viewing application will leverage open standards and core BlackBerry wireless email features including end-to-end security (with Triple DES encryption), always-on capabilities, multi-network support and centralized management to enable secure access to email attachments. The new application, developed using the AirDoc platform from Arizan Corporation which was acquired by RIM, will enable users to easily select attachments from within an email and view documents, spreadsheets, presentations and graphics attachments on their BlackBerry handhelds in a rich and intuitive way. Also, users will be able to retrieve a summary of the document or table of contents and selectively view the part of the document that is relevant. Popular corporate document formats such as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, WordPerfect, Adobe PDF, HTML and ASCII text will initially be supported.
RIM will begin customer trials of its attachment viewing application later this summer.
In addition to offering attachment viewing for the BlackBerry solution, the BlackBerry platform will enable developers to easily create and deploy other document handling applications. To facilitate application development, RIM plans to expand its BlackBerry software development tools to provide developers with detailed APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) for integrating applications with BlackBerry Enterprise Server. RIM is currently working with leading developers including HP, Onset and Xerox to provide additional document handling applications for BlackBerry handhelds such as printing, faxing and corporate file access.
HP & RIM
HP and RIM are jointly developing mobile printing applications for the BlackBerry solution, which will provide customers with increased productivity through the ability to print email and email attachments on network printers located within their corporate intranet while away from their desk or office.
"HP and RIM are developing mobile printing applications that can leverage a company's wireless and printing investments and allow their employees to remotely print documents while on the go," said Sharon Jones, Management and Mobile Infrastructure General Manager at HP Imaging and Printing Group. "With RIM's BlackBerry platform, we will be able to deliver innovative printing solutions faster and easier to our customers."
ONSET & RIM
Onset continues to bring enhanced messaging capabilities to BlackBerry users. Onset's currently available METAmessage add important functionality by letting users print attachments and Web pages, get corporate contact information, access network files, and interact with corporate databases.
"Onset solutions complement BlackBerry Enterprise Server capabilities, providing features such as attachment printing and network file and database interaction," said Gadi Mazor, Onset's CEO. "Working with the proven, extensible BlackBerry platform, Onset will continue to provide needed tools that make corporate data conveniently available to mobile professionals."
XEROX & RIM
Xerox's mDoc(r) offering further extends the value of the BlackBerry platform by providing printing and faxing of email attachments. In addition, mDoc provides BlackBerry users access to documents residing on enterprise servers and the ability to print, view, fax or email these documents while mobile. For example, sales professionals will be given the opportunity to improve customer response time with fingertip access to important documents such as contracts and invoices and strengthen relationships with the ability to personalize communications through customizable forms with pre-defined fields. Xerox is currently engineering an enhanced document viewing feature to be included in future offerings, providing graphics and text that are not only crisp and clear, but require minimal network bandwidth, providing significant cost savings.
"Xerox continues to develop and offer document access and delivery solutions that improve the productivity of the mobile workforce," said Gil Hatch, president, Office Systems Group at Xerox. "We strive to take full advantage of open standards architectures like the BlackBerry platform to deliver advanced solutions to our customers."