clip_image001For the last few months, we have been working hard on something great for our customers and partners.

For the first time businesses and consumers who prefer BlackBerry® devices will be able to purchase both Exchange Online services and Hosted BlackBerry® services together in the cloud without needing any additional servers or software.  This feature provides the full range of BlackBerry features such as push email, calendar and address book through their device.

Previously, this required a full BlackBerry® Enterprise Server (BES) installed on-premises. Before now, for small businesses and businesses using cloud services their usual route was the Blackberry® Internet Service (BIS) which provided email functionality but lacked calendar and address book support. Some popular cloud providers required a separate connector download and the customer to have a Blackberry Enterprise Server (and license) on site to get true BES functionality.

Now, all you need is a BlackBerry® device with service from your telecom provider, a subscription to Exchange Online and a subscription to Hosted BlackBerry Service.

Great User Experience

Further, businesses will be able to administer their BlackBerry® licenses and devices for their users in a portal experience that provides great ease of use. We can do this through leveraging our knowledge of both our customer’s Exchange mailboxes and their BlackBerry® devices, which enable us to give them a Better Together unified licensing/provisioning experience. With just 4 clicks through a wizard – a company administrator can move all of his Exchange users over to BlackBerry® with licenses automatically allocated in the process.

This is the initial launch of the portal, and we have much more to do as learn from our customers and partners on what is important to them in a BlackBerry Administration experience.  As this progresses, feel free give us feedback or ask any questions on Microsoft Online Technet forums.