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Blackberry Connect finally comes to Treo

Mon Oct 17, 2005 - 9:21 AM EDT - By Marcus Adolfsson

Palm and Research In Motion today announced that they are working together to bring BlackBerry Connect to the Palm Treo 650 smartphone. With BlackBerry Connect Treo users will be able to access a BlackBerry Enterprise Server and receive push based email and wireless calendar synchronization. Over 50,000 BlackBerry Servers are in the market today.

The companies expect the solution to be available in the United States and internationally starting in early 2006 through select carriers. Eric Martin, manager of business device marketing for Sprint Nextel, told last month that they plan to roll out BlackBerry Connect on Palm OS devices next year.

Considering the BlackBerry Connect initiative was announced in late 2003(!), this is a long awaited solution. Joe Fabris, Palm's director of wireless marketing, told that negotiations with RIM began in the Handspring days during the Treo 600 rollout, but were put on the "back burner as Palm acquired Handspring and developed the Treo 650".

Through RIM's BlackBerry Connect licensing program, Palm will enable its Treo 650 and future Palm OS based Treo smartphones with secure, push-based wireless email via BlackBerry Enterprise Server. The BlackBerry Connect technology will be integrated into Palm's VersaMail email client.

The solution will enable the following:

  • Push-based email
  • Wireless calendar synchronization
  • Remote address lookup of corporate email directory
  • Convenient email-attachment viewing
  • Triple DES encryption
  • IT policy enforcement and commands (such as remotely disabling or wiping email and PIM data from a device in the event it is lost or stolen).

Contacts are not synchronized at this time..

The Treo is already compatible with email systems from Microsoft Exchange, IBM's Lotus and Domino, Good Technology's GoodLink software, Intellisync, Seven, and Visto, and of course POP3 and IMAP.

"The long-term goal is to get e-mail available on every Treo with every server," Joe Fabris told

"Treo 650 has earned accolades as the best fully featured smartphone available, and we're thrilled to make it even better by answering customer requests and offering RIM's BlackBerry email solution for businesses," said Ed Colligan, president and chief executive officer of Palm, Inc. "Our news today demonstrates Palm's promise to offer flexible mobile-computing solutions with world-class, enterprise-strength partners, delivering what we're convinced is the best email experience to the broadest set of customers -- all on Treo smartphones."

"The BlackBerry architecture and infrastructure are recognized around the world as secure, manageable, reliable and scalable, and we are extremely pleased to broaden the choice of BlackBerry-enabled handsets with the Treo 650," said Jim Balsillie, chairman and co-CEO at RIM. "We have already seen significant customer interest in this powerful combination, and we look forward to building on our relationship with Palm."

BlackBerry Connect will be available for new and existing Treo 650 users through select carriers. Pricing and distribution details will be provided at a later date.

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