Research In Motion (RIM)’s new product features two words you don’t often see together: “Enterprise” and “Express.” Along with telecoms, good enterprise relations have long been RIM’s bread and butter, with the smartphone giant preferring to deploy its phone fleet through the proper channels, but with more end users choosing, purchasing, and bringing in their smartphones to the office, RIM’s now offering a “lightweight” version of its pricey BlackBerry Enterprise Server at a surprising price point: Free.
From the official RIM announcement:
The new BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express software will be provided free of charge in order to address two key market opportunities. First, the software offers economical advantages to small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) that desire the enterprise-grade security and manageability of BlackBerry® Enterprise Server but don’t require all of its advanced features. Second, more and more consumers are purchasing BlackBerry smartphones and the free BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express software provides a cost-effective solution that enables IT departments to meet the growing demand from employees to be able to connect their personal BlackBerry smartphones to their work email.
The offering boasts “over 35 IT controls and policies, including the ability to remotely wipe a smartphone and enforce and reset passwords,” which covers a variety of basic business needs, and which could be a great introduction to the hundreds of management and integration features that the full BES offers.