RIM to serve up IBM software on BlackBerry

Partnership will allow more workers travel without their laptops while maintaining access to their most critical business applications

IBM and Research in Motion (RIM) announced this week at the Wireless Enterprise Symposium in Orlando that a good portion of Big Blue's software can now be served up on a corporate BlackBerry.

In addition to being able to access Lotus Connections, a suite of Web 2.0 inspired tools that include social networking profiles and blogs that IBM touts as its fastest selling software product, companies who have Business Intelligence from Cognos (which IBM acquired late last fall ) and IBM Sametime, the company's unified communication suite, can also have access to those applications while on the road.

Kevin Cavanaugh, Vice President of Messaging and Collaboration Software at IBM, told CIO the partnership is not exclusive.

When asked if the company would be open to similar deals with other carriers, such as Apple and its iPhone, he emphasized BlackBerry was IBM's main focus for its mobile efforts.

"It's not exclusive, but on the other hand, RIM's BlackBerry is the most widely deployed handheld in our customer base," he says. "They have a secure environment and architecture for enterprise data."

Cavanaugh says the partnership should allow more workers to start travelling without their laptops but maintain access to some of their most critical business applications.

"It's something we've heard from customers across the board: When they are on the road, they want to still be able to participate in the daily life of the office, but not have to take their laptop with them to do it," he says.

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