RIM Shows Off WebKit Browser For BlackBerry

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News Posted: Thu, Feb 18 2010 12:55 AM
RIM's BlackBerry line of smartphones has been popular among business users for years, but if there's one complaint many users have it's that the Web browser is lagging in functionality in comparison to the full-fledged browsers available on other smartphones such as the iPhone. Now, we're beginning to see hope that a new browser for the BlackBerry platform will be coming soon.

Ever since RIM purchased Torch Mobile in August of 2009, many people suspected that a WebKit-powered BlackBerry browser was in the works. Although RIM hasn't specified when the new browser will be available, it is showing off its new, faster, and smoother WebKit-powered browser at Mobile World Congress this week. Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis described some of the benefits of the new browser: "You’ll see how fast it downloads, how quickly it renders and how smooth it scrolls and zooms in."

In addition to touting a new browser, RIM also announced a free platform for small and mid-sized businesses named BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express. Designed for businesses who want the enterprise-grade security and manageability of BlackBerry Enterprise Server but don’t need all of its advanced features, BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express will be provided free of charge.

BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express works with Microsoft Exchange 2010, 2007, and 2003 and Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2008 and 2003. It will provide users with secure, push-based, wireless access to email, calendar, contacts, notes and tasks, as well as other business applications and enterprise systems behind the firewall. The new server software utilizes the same security architecture found in BlackBerry Enterprise Server.

IT administrators will appreciate that the BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express also offers the following:
  • Runs on the same physical or virtual server as the Microsoft mail server or on its own server. BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express is also certified for use with VMware ESX
  • Over 35 IT controls and policies, including the ability to remotely wipe a smartphone and enforce and reset passwords
  • A Web-based interface that allows remote administration and makes it easy to install the software, connect BlackBerry smartphones and apply usage policies
BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express will be available as a free download in March. For more information, visit www.blackberry.com/besexpress.


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rapid1 replied on Thu, Feb 18 2010 2:53 AM

This is nice seeing as on the smart phone market from what I understand the BlackBerries even beat the iPhone from what I've heard. So added usability and functions as well as security concerns is nice.

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3vi1 replied on Thu, Feb 18 2010 9:00 PM

WebKit is the same engine behind Google Chrome and Safari. Don't expect to be browsing the new Bing Maps with it from a non-MS platform.

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

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Dave_HH replied on Fri, Feb 19 2010 12:05 AM

How'd you get so smart, 3vi1? :)

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Inspector replied on Fri, Feb 19 2010 2:35 AM

He learned from the best :D HH <3

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rapid1 replied on Fri, Feb 19 2010 2:59 AM

rofl Webkit is behind several as well as being open source isn't it?

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3vi1 replied on Fri, Feb 19 2010 8:53 AM

Hehe... I think BlackBerry's use of WebKit is a good thing. Execs will actually become aware of open non-proprietary web services when they can't use the ones tied to WinAPIs.

But, you knew I just couldn't zooming out to show how this relates to what Microsoft is really pulling with Silverlight: 1) Leverage your desktop OS to get everyone using your web services, then 2) Leverage your proprietary web services to get everyone license your mobile OS. 3) Dance on RIM's grave and move development resources on to the next victim.

Now that MS has the go-ahead on the Yahoo deal, how long before Yahoo Maps just redirects to Bing?

What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?

++++++++++++[>++++>+++++++++>+++>+<<<<-]>+++.>++++++++++.-------------.+++.>---.>--.

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digitaldd replied on Fri, Feb 19 2010 9:24 AM

I just want the BlackBerry to come by default set to use internet browser and not BlackBerry browser. Blackberry browser can't render anything and often fails at connecting to the internet. I'm just glad each phone platform has at least 2 options.

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