RIM: Mobile Device Management Across BlackBerry, Android and iOS?

With all of the discussion regarding Mobile Device Management (MDM), most of the major MSP-centric software companies are introducing software to manage Apple iOS (iPad, iPhone) and Google Android devices. But another giant, RIM, is worth watching. Sure, RIM is struggling mightily on the financial front. But BlackBerry devices have been known for the security and corporate management capabilities for more than a decade. Can RIM repeat that success by pushing into iOS and Android management?

So where is RIM going with its BlackBerry Enterprise Server, Mobile Fusion, Playbook OS 2.0 and Device Service for BlackBerry Mobile Fusion? We’ll explain.

From the beginning, BlackBerry’s Enterprise Solution has been regarded as useful and secure for mobile device management software, which is now on version 5.0.3. BlackBerry’s Mobile Fusion attempts to bring BlackBerry’s Enterprise Solution forward by appealing to the change in the marketplace – adapting to the constant pressures to support a wide variety of devices from multiple manufacturers.

The BlackBerry Playbook tablet supports Microsoft ActiveSync technology, which is a common email/PIN synchronization and transport protocol. With Microsoft’s technology, users are able to connect to popular mail platforms: Gmail, Windows Live, as well as others. BlackBerry Mobile Fusion uses Microsoft ActiveSync as an email and PIN sync.

Interestingly enough, BlackBerry’s Mobile Fusion extends mobile device management to iOS and Android platforms. By extending MDM to other platforms, BlackBerry’s Mobile Fusion enables administrators to apply corporate policies and configurations to manage and secure devices. Also, Blackberry’s Mobile Fusion allows customers to manage the distribution of mobile applications on devices, as well.

According to BlackBerry, its Mobile Fusion is a unified, multi-platform, mobile device management solution, which will provide management to BlackBerry devices, as well as other devices.

The big questions:

  • Can RIM overcome negative financial press and spread the word about its MDM strategy?
  • And where do partners fit into RIM's MDM initiative?
Big questions. Any MSPs care to weigh in with potential answers or views?
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