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RIM Caters to Mac Crowd With New BlackBerry Syncing Tool

By Erika Morphy MacNewsWorld ECT News Network
Jul 21, 2009 11:51 AM PT

Research In Motion is making a major overture to its Mac-using customers with BlackBerry Desktop Manager For Mac, a syncing tool that will become available in September.

RIM Caters to Mac Crowd With New BlackBerry Syncing Tool

The software will allow Mac owners to update their BlackBerry devices when new software becomes available, back up content automatically, better manage applications on the device, and -- perhaps most importantly -- sync to iTunes. It will be compatible with Mac OS 10.5.5 and above and will come with optional encryption.

The application builds on the preview version of Media Sync for Mac Users that RIM rolled out last December.

RIM did not respond to MacNewsWorld's request for comment in time for publication.

Making Do

Mac users have been using such applications as PocketMac for BlackBerry or Missing Sync for such basic tasks as syncing contacts and calendar information. However, the completion of tasks requiring more advanced functionality -- such as deleting apps -- can be cumbersome with currently available syncing tools, as one user pointed out in a comment on RIM's official BlackBerry blog.

"This is so excellent," said kerryd. "Although I like Missing Sync for the BlackBerry I hate having to go into Windows through Parallels to manage my device, add software etc."

The easier connections, not to mention the iTunes compatibility, are why the Desktop Manager for Mac is going to be well received, IDC analyst Ryan Reith told MacNewsWorld. RIM rolled out a similar platform in June, Media Sync for Windows, which offers the same iTunes connection.

"It is very seamless -- it is just like plugging your iPod into your computer and syncing up with iTunes," said Reith.

By offering Mac users their own platform, RIM "demonstrates that they realize there are a significant number of Mac users out there whose needs have to be met as well," he added.

New Universe

The new product is one of many RIM has been pushing to keep its grip on the ever-expanding and ever-demanding smartphone market. Earlier this year, for instance, it launched an App store, BlackBerry App World with thousands of applications from such companies as Salesforce.com, AOL and MySpace.

It's also increasingly taking on the iPhone -- which is making surprisingly deep inroads into the enterprise -- with stylish devices like the BlackBerry Storm, which outsold Apple's iPhone in the first quarter, according to market researchers at the NPD Group.

Giving Mac and BlackBerry users a new desktop manager to effortlessly sync with iTunes is a component of RIM's market strategy.

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Contact Center AI Explained by Pop Culture