Feeds

Dell unveils Blackberry pager

Takes on Palm, WAP in wireless comms biz

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

Dell launched itself against Palm Computing yesterday when it released its first non-PC product: the much-rumoured Blackberry two-way pager. Not the most obvious area to move into, you might think - pagers are ten a penny these days - but Blackberry's interest lies in the fact that it's actually more wireless organiser than pager.

Blackberry's USP is its ability to maintain personal diaries and address books, both of which can be synchronised with and backed-up to a PC, and send and receive email. Essentially, what we have here is a wireless PDA at a fraction of the cost of devices like the Palm VII. Unlike the Palm VII, there's no Web access, but in the kind of corporate roles Dell has in mind for the product, that shouldn't matter too much - this is, after all, a communications tool rather than an information access product.

Blackberry is about the size of a pack of cards, and its front panel sports a text screen and a QWERTY keypad. It was developed by Canadian company Research in Motion, and is based on an Intel 386 chip. It will ship in the US for $399, plus a $39.95 per month connection fee. That's less than the Palm VII and is likely to be cheaper than next year's next-generation WAP-based mobile phones, all of which will be pitched into the emerging market for wireless data comms devices.

Ultimately, all three device types will come together - Palm licensee Handspring is developing a pager module for its Visor PDA, while Qualcomm is already offering PalmOS-based mobile phones - but there's room here for Dell to try its pager-based approached in the meantime.

It's uncertain right now how users will want to use wireless media to access wider information networks - phone, PDA or some other device - but Dell's approach has clear advantages: Blackberry is less obtrusive than a cellphone, and, unlike most PDAs, the user has a keypad rather than a stylus. So there's no need to learn Graffiti, or any of the difficulties encountered attempting to enter text using a mobile phone's numerical keypad. ®

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple ran off to IBM
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.