Enterprise customers getting hold of a BlackBerry Storm are finding the handset is not quite as enterprise as they might have hoped.
The issue arise with the way that RIM, owner of the BlackBerry brand, segments customers. There are those who use Blackberry Internet Solution, and those using Blackberry Enterprise Solution. And while the Storm comes with Blackberry Internet Solution support, Enterprise integration will cost an additional 16 quid a month - once it's working.
RIM has long tried to position itself as a consumer brand as well as offering the best push email service for business users. The Storm is well equipped to reinforce this perception, but many customers are buying it on the basis that it will also integrate with their Enterprise Solution and are sadly disappointed.
The Internet Solution integrates with POP3 email accounts as well as web-based email, but anyone wanting to use Domino, Groupwise, Exchange or similar must pay for an Enterprise Solution. The same applies to users wanting to use other enterprise applications based on the BlackBerry platform.
A cheerfully honest response from Vodafone support explains the details:
"RIM charge us for every SIM card number registered on their network, and they charge us more for an Enterprise connection than for a Prosumer connection - this is why the cost suddenly jumps from £10 to £26 when moving to a BES handset."
But even then the company isn't confident that everything will work properly as yet:
"The BES service books for the Storm are not quite ready ... chances are it still wouldn't work. Obviously we'd rather not take the chance just yet until we know everything is working 100 per cent on that side."
All this is part of a "planned, phased rollout", and Vodafone tells us that the Enterprise-ready version of the Storm is coming over the next few weeks. Customers interested in using the Storm with BES should speak directly to their [Vodafone] account manager about getting devices configured for them. ®