Beginning July, BlackBerry Professional Software and BlackBerry Unite! will be phased out, and all customer support ended by 2010, according to carrier communications. Both are very promising apps that were never implemented as well as they should have been.
Unite! is a free offering that brings some enterprise-style functions to small groups, although it is marketed to casual businesses and families with five or fewer devices. With Unite!, you can execute security policies, as well as share calendars and multimedia. As you can guess, BlackBerry Professional Software is slightly more businessy, but is basically a cheaper version of the full-blown BlackBerry Enterprise Server. BPS is geared towards small and medium businesses that don’t have the budget for an IT admin. Up to thirty users are supported, and offers calendar and contact syncing over Domino or Exchange, e-mail routing, policy implementation, and lots of other BES-like features.
Everyone’s got to cut some of the fat during rough economic times, and as such, it’s not a huge surprise to see these otherwise good ideas kick the bucket. Who knows? Maybe once everything has evened out, we’ll see them resurrected and done properly from the ground up.