Research In Motion (RIM) launched the latest edition of its BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), version 5.0, the company's core piece of BlackBerry infrastructure for secure, mobile corporate messaging, at its annual Wireless Enterprise Symposium (WES) event in Orlando on Monday.
The new BES--formerly codenamed "Argon" in reference to the element, which is particularly stable--was officially announced back in February, but the software is now available to RIM's many corporate customers.
Alan Panezic, RIM's VP of software product management, calls BES 5.0 "the highest quality release of BES ever."
RIM's main focus with BES 5.0 is understandably on the administrator, but BlackBerry users will also see a number of enhancements in BES 5.0. Some of the most notable changes are as follows:
-BlackBerry Administration Service (BAS): a new administration tool with a web-based user interface that provides centralized management, monitoring and control of smartphone deployments and the complete BlackBerry system environment. IT staff can easily access the BlackBerry Administration Service from an Internet Explorer web browser
-Role-based access controls allow IT administrators to delegate tasks to IT staff, either individuals or groups, and control access to IT functionality. Screen consoles display only the functions that are available to the individual IT administrator.
-Over-The-Air (OTA) application deployment and device software updates can be better managed and controlled with job scheduling and throttling.
-IT administrative task scheduling supports the deployment of device, application and server updates at times that can help minimize impact on smartphone users and business operations.
-Mobile application management and deployment enhancements support the efficient management and control of applications across smartphone deployments
RIM has been using BES 5.0 internally for more than a year with more than 10,000 employees connected to the new version. And the new software has also been in use for some time at organizations including IBM, Linklaters, Metro Group, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP, Reed Smith LLP, and Tayside Fire and Rescue, according to RIM.