Monday, May 04, 2009

Google launches push services on BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES)

Google Apps Connector for BES is a piece of software developed by Google that sits on the BES and pushes your Google services to your BlackBerry. The software allows users to access Gmail, Google Calendar and Contacts using the built-in BlackBerry applications they already know and love.

This latest news from Google is intended to help small to medium sized businesses save costs on email services, while improving the overall BES email experience. Users can now instantly receive Gmail messages within the built-in email client on their Blackberry and they can continue to use the same shortcuts to manage their BlackBerry messages.

Although the calendar currently only supports 1-way syncing, 2-way syncing is on the way. This represents the Google mentality of launching a product early, as soon as it is functional for a large group of people. Research found that only power-users are looking for 2-way sync, and that the majority of BlackBerry users use their device for read only functionality.

Users can also access the email addresses and phone numbers of their co-workers using a company wide Global Address List. Both personal and business contacts saved on Google Apps are automatically synchronized over the air to users’ BlackBerry devices and integrated into the native Blackberry applications.

It was important for Google to make the transition for IT administrators easy. Admins are given full control of the solution and can continue to manage BlackBerry devices using the BES. Google Apps Connector installs on the BES, connecting it to the Google Apps cloud and synchronizing email, calendar and contacts for all users.

Google Apps Connector for BES is currently in beta testing with select companies and universities, and will be available free of charge to all Premier and Education Edition customers this July. Those of you who enjoy the Gmail experience with conversations, labels and full search capabilities can continue to use Gmail for Mobile.