Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Nokia E90 First Smartphone with BlackBerry Connect 4.0

Nokia e90
During the Smartphone Summit yesterday, a day-long fiesta of seminars devoted to all things smartphones just ahead of the CTIA Wireless show in Orlando, Vincent Washington, a Business Development Manager at Research In Motion (RIM) revealed Nokia's upcoming E90 Communicator will be the first device to support BlackBerry Connect 4.0, a major upgrade over the current version.

The BlackBerry Connect program enables the mob-e-mail leader's push e-mail and data access solutions to work with non-Blackberry devices. BlackBerry Connect 4.0 adds the ability to generate an encryption key wirelessly, wireless activation of a device in the enterprise, AES in addition to Triple Data Encryption Standard (DES), Dutch and Brazilian Portuguese language support, and the ablity to erase and disable a BlackBerry-enabled device

So for corporate customers BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) software tightly integrates with Microsoft Exchange, IBM Lotus Domino and existing enterprise systems to enable secure access to e-mail and other corporate data. This includes the automatic synchronization of messages to the E90's inbox, calendar syncing, attachment viewing, Triple DES encryption, Remote Address Lookup of corporate directory, and centralized device management, with support for IT policies such as over-the-air device disablement and password device lock.

And, as with individuals and small businesses with BlackBerry handhelds, BlackBerry Connect will enable E90 users to access ISP e-mail accounts through the hosted BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS).

More on the E90
Nokia resurrects its long-running communicator line with the E90, which is now a part of the business-centric Eseries.

While the E90 is a Symbian smartphone like past communicators, Nokia ditches the S80 interface for the far more popular S60 platform with this device. This means, among other things, a far larger swath of third-party software will be available to E90 owners than the 9500, for example.

The E90 measures 5.2 x 2.2 x 0.8 inches (132 x 57 x 20 millimeters) and weighs 7.4 ounces (210 grams).

As a quad-band GSM (850/900/1800/1900) device, the E90 will pretty much get you a signal almost anywhere in the world. There's also GPRS, 2.5G EDGE, 3G UMTS and 3.5G HSPDA data networking supported. Additional wireless technologies include Wi-Fi, Bluetooth with stereo headset support, GPS and even an FM radio.

There's a full keypad along with a 240 x 320 pixel resolution display that you can run software from on the outside - so you can use nearly all the E90's functions with the smartphone closed (unlike previous Nokia communicators), and a full QWERTY thumb-keyboard with a large 800 x 352 pixel resolution screen that supports 16 million colors inside.

The E90 has two cameras, a 3.2 megapixel one with autofocus and flash and a second shooter for video conferencing. It features stereo speakers and a 2.5 mm connector for stereo headphones. There's a microSD slot to add additional storage on top of the device's built-in 128 MB of RAM: It ships with a 512 MB microSD card, which format that is now available up to 2 GB in size. The E90 sports a USB Mini-B connector to link to a PC at USB 2.0 speeds.

It includes a text-to-speech reader, the Quickoffice document editor/reader, many personal information management tools, the new Nokia Maps application, a MP3 and AAC audio player, an video player, and a full compliment of messaging and e-mail options.

Nokia estimates the E90 will start shipping during the second quarter of this year, and become available globally during the third. The unsubsidized retail price should be around 750 to 800 Euros, which is in the $1,000 range.


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