Symbian and Microsoft both announced deals with Canadian pager company RIM for a piece of their email gateway today.
Nokia surprised the industry by signing a licensing deal with RIM for the right to use the latter's software late last year. Nokia will support RIM's Blackberry Connect stack on its phones later this year. This move was an acknowledgement of the success of the RIM model in the US market, and marked a defeat for the standards-based WAP model. Although WAP now has 'push' capabilities and the carriers have 'always on' packet data, the infrastructure burden and lack of consistency in the fragmented North American market allowed RIM to capitalize on the mess.
RIM is better known to Register regulars as Lawsuits In Motion for its ludicrous pursuit of Handspring - and anyone else within shouting distance - for "copying" its hugely innovative "keyboard and wheel" combo. Understandably, cash-strapped Handspring and Palm settled the dispute rather than fight on, despite an abundance of prior-art which could have nullified the legal nasty.
RIM has since added voice capabilities to its pager range, although in real life, only Stewart "BREW will be a big long-term winner" Alsop would be prepared to hold one of these up to his ear. And look where his advice has got you.
RIM has lawsuits with rival pager company Good Technologies outstanding. Good has licensed its Blackberry-like software to PalmSource.
In all, a good day for the Canadians. ®
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