BlackBerry simplifies and enhances UEM software suite portfolio

The number of BlackBerry UEM suites is being reduced from five to three, with both security and productivity elements being enhanced, and partner services opportunities increased.

BlackBerry has announced the availability of BlackBerry Secure UEM & Productivity Suites. The revamp of their UEM portfolio simplifies the lineup, from five suites to three, while also enhancing the offerings with new capabilities.

“We had five BlackBerry Secure UEM and Productivity suites before, and with this announcement are simplifying that from five suites to three, and are rebranding those,” said Richard McLeod, BlackBerry’s Global Vice President, Enterprise Software Channels. “We have also added a lot of new capabilities.”

The three new offerings are the Choice Suite, the Freedom Suite and the Limitless Suite. That’s a very different tone from the old portfolio, which was: Content Edition; Application Edition; Collaboration Edition; Enterprise Edition; and Management Edition

“The Choice Suite is our foundational product,” McLeod said. “That was our former Enterprise Edition, but also includes BlackBerry Connect, our secure instant messaging application, reporting and analytic capabilities, and BlackBerry Work.  It’s a productivity package and security in a mobile environment.”

The Choice Suite has all Mobile Device Management [MDM] functions except Regulated Sector Control, and many Secure Business Productivity components, including Secure Browser, PIM [Email, Calendar, Contacts], Tasks, Sharing, Instant Messaging, and Virtual Apps and Virtual Desktops. Its Mobile Application Management [MAM] functions include App Containerization, Unlimited ISV App Deployment, and Unlimited Custom App Deployment.

“It’s one single platform and one single pane of glass to manage, so it is simplified for the administrator as well as the end user,” McLeod said. “It enables our new Zero Trust security architecture and will enable the Zero Touch architecture that was announced on our BlackBerry World Tour.” The latter is still in beta.

The upgraded offering, the Freedom Suite, has all of the Choice Suite’s capabilities, and adds some other ones.

“It improves business user productivity with collaboration, customization and enterprise grade security,” McLeod said. In addition to Secure Collaboration and Secure Notes, it allows the ability to create, edit, and format Office 365 documents.

Richard McLeod, BlackBerry’s Global Vice President, Enterprise Software Channels

“Security is enhanced with Identity and Access Management with single sign-on, 2FA, and the MAM BlackBerry Dynamics ISV App and Custom App Deployment, and SDK,” he added. “The security is very robust. It can be the security pillar with all the capabilities built in, especially around single-sign on and 2FA.”

The Limitless Suite, the new high end of the line, adds full digital rights management [DRM] capabilities for file level security policies, as well as multi-channel UEM notifications,

“You have full-blown Workspaces with full DRM, where you can set user permissions,” McLeod said. “The broader UEM alerts are useful, because if you have a ransomware attack, you likely don’t want to alert people with email. You can do phones or text instead.”

McLeod said that the Limitless Suite is the migration path from the present Content Edition.

“We are migrating our Management and Enterprise editions over time to Choice,” he noted. That’s the idea migration for them. The present Collaboration edition and Application edition are migrating to the new Freedom suite.”

The new suites offer BlackBerry channel partners multiple opportunities, McLeod stated.

“It provides them with the ability to have new conversations with customers as their suites come up for renewal,” he indicated. “Both security and productivity have been top of mind with customers and both have been strengthened in the new versions of the offering. There are also nice services capabilities around both, and great opportunities for Office 365 and SharePoint integrations around Workspaces.”

BlackBerry has formally announced this to partners, together with global webinars on the new pricing and new SKUs.

“We are ready to go with all this capability, which will let partners make more in services revenue while adding more value to customers,” McLeod indicated.

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