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By Carmen Nobel  |  Posted 2002-10-21 Print this article Print

: Wireless Users in Enterprise Face Hard Choice"> At the CTIA Wireless show here last week, RIM announced shipment of the 6710 and 6720 BlackBerry devices that run in the United States and overseas on GPRS networks and support both voice and data. T-Mobile and AT&T Wireless plan to offer the 6710, which follows the 5810, a data-only GPRS e-mail pager available now. In the next month, there should be RIM devices shipping that support additional networks beyond GPRS—;such as CDMA1X, which sources said Verizon will offer—;and a pager/phone/ walkie-talkie device that supports Nextel Communications Inc.s iDen network.

"If youre going to solve an enterprises problem, its pretty multifaceted," said Jim Balsillie, CEO of RIM, in Waterloo, Ontario. "Were trying to be a global provider." Balsillie showed eWeek a prototype of a triband BlackBerry device with a color screen, which AT&T Wireless may offer early next year. Arnolds Abellas-Martin said he is interested in devices that combine voice and data but has no plans for Symbian devices. "Symbians yet another thing to learn and support. And the problem with GSM/GPRS for voice and data is that it doesnt work everywhere."

Despite complaints from corporate users, officials at Nokia, Sony Ericsson and Symbian said smart phones aimed at enterprise audiences are unlikely. But all three are working with developers to figure out how to serve the enterprise with MMS. Nokia officials said systems integrators are set to unveil plans by years end to develop enterprise applications for MMS beyond the often-touted "real estate application" of sending pictures of houses from a phone.

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