First MVNO to pick Blackberry
BT today reinforced its presence in the mobile market by signing an agreement with Research In Motion (RIM) to become Europe’s first Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) to sell the BlackBerry(R) wireless solution.
The deal will enable BT to offer BlackBerry to its corporate customer base, building on BT’s success in the business mobile market and extending the benefits currently available to BT’s mobile customers. The BlackBerry Wireless Handhelds(TM) will be co-branded by both BlackBerry and BT.
Developed and manufactured by RIM, BlackBerry offers BT’s customers secure, always-on, wireless access to their corporate email and data, via an advanced BlackBerry handheld with integrated phone, text messaging, browser, calendar and organizer capability. The BlackBerry always-on ‘push’ technology also means customers don’t have to periodically connect to their email to check for new messages; messages are automatically routed to the handheld. BT is initially offering the BlackBerry 7230(TM) and BlackBerry 7730(TM) handhelds.
For corporate customers, BlackBerry Enterprise Server(TM) software tightly integrates with Microsoft(R) Exchange or IBM Lotus(R) Domino(TM) (Novell GroupWise expected to be available later this year) and works with existing enterprise systems to enable secure, push-based, wireless access to email and other corporate data.
Steven Evans, CEO of BT Mobile, said: “This partnership with RIM is another strong example of BT’s commitment to offer leading edge mobile solutions to corporate customers. The fact that this is the first European deal that RIM has done with a mobile virtual network operator is a strong reflection of BT’s strength in the corporate mobile market. The flexibility that wireless solutions and services can give companies is particularly appealing and BlackBerry has already become indispensable to thousands of organizations across the world.”
Larry Conlee, Chief Operating Officer, Research In Motion, said: “BT has a large corporate customer base with a strong support infrastructure and we are very pleased it has chosen to offer BlackBerry to its customers. Together, we can help mobile professionals achieve significant business and personal benefits through advanced connectivity solutions.”