RIM, HP Alliance Offers BlackBerry Tools for Mobile Workers

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion and Hewlett-Packard, on the eve of RIM's Wireless Enterprise Symposium, announced a strategic alliance to bring productivity tools to enterprise workers. These will include CloudPrint, a simple way to print to any printer, and the HP Operations Manager for BlackBerry Enterprise Server.

Research In Motion and Hewlett-Packard have announced a "strategic alliance" in which they'll together deliver a portfolio of mobile enterprise products custom built for RIM's BlackBerry smartphones and platform.

Leading into RIM's Wireless Enterprise Symposium, which starts May 5 in Orlando, Fla., RIM and HP introduced two of the new mobile enterprise products, CloudPrint and HP Operations Manager for BlackBerry Enterprise Server.

The new mobile tools will include support for the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) 5.0, which RIM rolled out Feb. 11.

CloudPrint enables mobile and traveling professionals to print from their BlackBerry smartphone to any printer - without a driver. The printer-agnostic solution requires only an Internet connection.

CloudPrint, which was invented by HP Labs, will be available to BlackBerry Internet service subscribes and BES customers.

"RIM and HP are working together to deliver solutions to customers that weave mobility into their daily operations - from innovative new services in the cloud to managed mobile services for the enterprise," said Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of RIM, wrote in a statement. "Through our collaboration with HP, businesses will have access to an expanded set of applications and services for their BlackBerry smartphone deployments."

HP Operations Manager for BES is a software to centrally monitor and mange the extended BlackBerry solution ecosystem, including BES software, mail servers, databases, Microsoft Active Directory and server operating systems such as Windows Server.

HP Operations Manager correlates events from all parts of the mobile ecosystem, pointing out potential problems so they can be addressed proactively.

"As businesses look for new ways to increase service levels, reduce operational costs and improve productivity, they can meet these challenges by transforming how they manage the infrastructure that powers their mobile workforces," Ann Livermore, executive vice president of HP's Technology Solutions Group, wrote in a statement. "Emerging models of communications and collaboration have created an opportunity for RIM and HP to provide service-based mobile solutions that deliver value to customers."

HP, the number one PC maker in the world, on Feb. 18 announced a first quarter 2009 net revenue of $28.8 billion, with software accounting for 3 percent of its revenue portfolio.

On April 2, RIM announced fourth-quarter 2009 revenue of $3.46 billion - a strong showing in a difficult economy. Lately, the company has been making moves to ingratiate itself with consumers, in addition to the enterprise.