Feeds

Dell unveils Blackberry pager

Takes on Palm, WAP in wireless comms biz

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

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. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it
Go ahead, you're all clear, kid... Sorry, wrong film
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Musicians sue UK.gov over 'zero pay' copyright fix
Everyone else in Europe compensates us - why can't you?
I'll be back (and forward): Hollywood's time travel tribulations
Quick, call the Time Cops to sort out this paradox!
Megaupload overlord Kim Dotcom: The US HAS RADICALISED ME!
Now my lawyers have bailed 'cos I'm 'OFFICIALLY' BROKE
Forget Hillary, HP's ex CARLY FIORINA 'wants to be next US Prez'
Former CEO has political ambitions again, according to Washington DC sources
prev story

Whitepapers

Seattle children’s accelerates Citrix login times by 500% with cross-tier insight
Seattle Children’s is a leading research hospital with a large and growing Citrix XenDesktop deployment. See how they used ExtraHop to accelerate launch times.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.