BlackBerry Launches BES 12 And Announces New Features

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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BlackBerry officially launches its new MDM platform and reveals new identiy, VPN and dual billing capabilities

BlackBerry has officially launched the latest version of its mobile device management (MDM) platform, BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 (BES 12) and revealed a number of new features that can be added on to the core service.

BES 12 pitched as a comprehensive Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) platform comprising app data and device management features alongside end-to-end security powered by advanced encryption, containerisation, application wrapping and connectivity to BlackBerry’s global network.

It can be used to manage Android, iOS, BlackBerry 10, BlackBerry OS and, for the first time, Windows Phone devices in both corporately owned and BYOD environments and can easily switch between physical infrastructure and the public, private or hybrid cloud.

BES 12 features

BlackBerry Assistant PassportAmong the new features of BES 12, which was first announced at Mobile World Congress (MWC) earlier this year, is a new dashboard that aims to simplify the management of users, services, policies and profiles with easy to use interface and dashboards.

Up to 25,000 devices can be managed per server and 150,000 per domain and BES 12 is the first version of BES to support the management of IoT devices such as sensors, industrial machinery and connected cars.

“BlackBerry security is the best in the industry and BES12 is built on the proven BlackBerry security and sophisticated encryption that our customers know and trust,” claims John Sims, president of BlackBerry Global Enterprise Services.

“BlackBerry pioneered the capability to securely manage smartphones within the enterprise. Now, with these new value-added services, we’re focusing on taking our offering beyond EMM to enable customers to solve real security and productivity challenges associated with the use of mobile technology across their enterprise.”

Other services

The Canadian manufacturer sees BES 12 as the central component of a platform on which other services can be added. These include VPN authentication, dual-billing and BlackBerry Enterprise Identity, which uses existing BlackBerry credentials to provide single sign-on to a range of cloud services.

BES 12 is intended to unify the existing BES5 and BES10 platforms, with the ‘EZ Pass Migration Program’ offering firms the chance to upgrade for free. The platform is central to the company’s ongoing recovery which has seen its focus move away from the consumer market to enterprise devices and services.

Orange, Verizon and Vodafone are among the operators committed to rolling out BES 12 on their networks, while BlackBerry has also signed a deal with Salesforce to allow public sector organisations to embrace mobile working while adhering to regulations.

BlackBerry has also entered into an Android security partnership with Samsung, while it has also updated its BlackBerry Messenger service with ‘BBM Meetings’.

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