Yesterday we got some big news about the BlackBerry Application Suite, the next generation of Connect which will bring all that great BlackBerry functionality to Windows Mobile devices. This is primarily for enterprises looking to support a wider range of devices without having to change their entire back-end for a few rebellious smartphone-users. It looks like after a bit of time playing with BAS, the tipster in question has cooked up a list of impressions and features.
- It’s an application that runs on Windows Mobile 6 devices
- It can start up when the device boots
- Features almost exactly the same as RIM’s native OS including email & maps support
- Supports IT policies inside the application along with BlackBerry MDS
- It is based on OS 4.2.1 but that will change soon
- Navigation is through a Touchscreen, Dpad, or keyboard
- WM can connect to a separate APN, simultaneous APN connections are supported (You can connected to a carrier APN via WinMo and BlackBerry APN via BAS) This is a HUGE improvement over BlackBerry connect.
- BlackBerry Email including attachments
- RIM Instant Messaging clients work: Gtalk, Yahoo IM, AIM, Windows Live
- Can send and receive PIN messages and BlackBerry Messenger
- Supports BES sync of calendar, tasks, address book, & memos
- PIM/Email databases, unlike BB Connect, are separate. Thus you can have two Exchange accounts (one via WM, one via BES) syncing fully.
- Browser works just like BlackBerry browser allowing or intranet access on BES
- Integrates with the phone so you can make calls and all even from links on websites
- Allows for caller ID in the phone application
- You can access your windows mobile files from the BlackBerry OS though the opposite is not possible
- You can easily switch between the BlackBerry and Windows Mobile OS
- Supports easy switching between landscape and portrait view
- It works with BIS 2.4+ or BES or both
- Blackberry Maps is there but it is not location aware.
- It cannot access physical hardware, such as GPS, Bluetooth, but since calls are through WM, you can use a BT headset.
- Video playback is not supported.
- You can install most BB apps, though some may not support VGA resolutions (should be fine on HTC Kaiser, as it is QVGA)
- Currently not all WM devices are supported, only HTC Kaiser, HTC Raphael and HTC Niki. Xperia X1 support is coming down the pipe.
- App uses 32 Mb (1Mbx32 files) to simulate BB filesystem
For those doubting the legitimacy of these rumours, you might want to scope out the blurrycam video of BAS in action.