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Reader Poll Our workshop on selection of mobile email platforms taking place over here is leading to some interesting insights. In particular, a couple of readers with direct experience of both BlackBerry and MS Exchange/Windows Mobile contrast the two environments. Here are a couple of extracts from their feedback to give you a flavour:

"I moved us off of RIM at the beginning of this year [...] I am now considering a move to either the new RIM devices (the Curve) or possibly to a Linux-mobile platform from the WM devices."
"We began using blackberries some time ago with the BES and a leased line to the mobile provider. (~1000 users) [...] so came along Exchange 2003 [...] However, we are currently reviewing our mobile working strategy, and with the developments of the BlackBerry devices and the MS OS showing its limitations, there is a distinct possibility that we will resurrect our BlackBerries and run the two services in parallel."

Along with some of the other feedback, there is a hint of a theme emerging of people regarding the BlackBerry platform as superior on the management control side, but still perceived as being proprietary with device related limitations, while Microsoft is regarded as being more capable on the device side and less complex from an architectural point of view. If the above two experiences of switching from BB to MS then (potentially) back again are at all representative, however, the suggestion is that the seemingly uncontested management and control superiority of RIM outweighs the perceived benefits of the Microsoft solution.

Clearly, though, we don’t have enough input here to be confident about such a conclusion, but we do have our inimitable readership to test this hypothesis on a larger scale. So, if you have a minute, we’d be grateful you could fill out our little poll below and help us get one step closer to the truth on this BlackBerry versus Microsoft question that is relevant to so many at the moment...

READER POLL

Questions relate to the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) based solution versus the Microsoft Exchange/Windows Mobile based alternative (apologies in advance to those with an interest in or experience of other solutions – we’ll deal those in a later poll).

With regard to ease of implementation, would you say:

a. BlackBerry is far superior to Exchange/WM
b. BlackBerry is moderately superior to Exchange/WM
c. They are about the same
d. Exchange/WM is moderately superior to BlackBerry
e. Exchange/WM is far superior to BlackBerry
f. Unsure

Why do you say this?

With regard to ability to manage and control, would you say:

a. BlackBerry is far superior to Exchange/WM
b. BlackBerry is moderately superior to Exchange/WM
c. They are about the same
d. Exchange/WM is moderately superior to BlackBerry
e. Exchange/WM is far superior to BlackBerry
f. Unsure

Why do you say this?

With regard to security, would you say:

a. BlackBerry is far superior to Exchange/WM
b. BlackBerry is moderately superior to Exchange/WM
c. They are about the same
d. Exchange/WM is moderately superior to BlackBerry
e. Exchange/WM is far superior to BlackBerry
f. Unsure

Why do you say this?

With regard to cost and hassle of support, would you say:

a. BlackBerry is far superior to Exchange/WM
b. BlackBerry is moderately superior to Exchange/WM
c. They are about the same
d. Exchange/WM is moderately superior to BlackBerry
e. Exchange/WM is far superior to BlackBerry
f. Unsure

Why do you say this?

With regard to user experience/functionality, would you say:

a. BlackBerry is far superior to Exchange/WM
b. BlackBerry is moderately superior to Exchange/WM
c. They are about the same
d. Exchange/WM is moderately superior to BlackBerry
e. Exchange/WM is far superior to BlackBerry
f. Unsure

Why do you say this?

Do you have direct experience of managing or implementing:

a. A BlackBerry installation
b. An Exchange/WM environment
c. Both
d. Neither – but have investigated the area
e. Neither – just giving my general perceptions

Any final comments?

Approximately how large is your organisation (worldwide) in terms of employees?

Less than 10 employees
10 to 49 employees
50 to 249 employees
250 to 4,999 employees
5,000 to 24,999 employees
More than 25,000 employees
Unsure / N/A

Thank you, we'll report back at the end of the week.

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