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RIM Lets BlackBerry Users Tap IP PBX, Wi-Fi Calling

Research in Motion Ltd. has added another perk for business users of its BlackBerry smartphones with the addition of an IP PBX extension, the BlackBerry Mobile Voice System 5, which gives users corporate 4-digit dialing from their BlackBerry, and lets them share one number for the desk set and the cell phone. The MVS 5 enables voice over Wi-Fi calling as well. The company is also debuting a new interoperability platform to enable telecom operators to offer BlackBerry MVS 5 as part of their managed or hosted corporate phone system offerings.

BlackBerry MVS 5 works with Cisco Systems Inc.’s Unified Communications Manager and routes calls through the IP PBX. Incoming calls ring simultaneously on the employee’s desk phone and BlackBerry smartphone, and employees access BlackBerry MVS using the same phone interface that they are already familiar with on their BlackBerry smartphone.

“BlackBerry Mobile Voice System 5 effectively provides a wireless extension of the corporate phone system to allow voice over Wi-Fi calling at work, public hotspots and home,” said Alan Panezic, vice president of Platform Product Management at RIM. “It presents a great opportunity for companies to enhance the productivity of employees who are often away from their desks or working from home, such as workers in construction, hospitality, sales and professional services. This latest release enables businesses to better leverage their investment in the corporate phone system, adapt to the growing demand by employees for more flexible work arrangements, improve workforce productivity and save costs on long-distance and international roaming charges.”

RIM and Cisco have worked closely to integrate BlackBerry MVS 5 with Cisco Unified Communications Manager to deliver an enhanced user experience. The solution has been tested for interoperability and will be supported by both RIM and Cisco.

Key features include:

  • Wi-Fi network access controls to set which Wi-Fi networks employees can access network-preference settings with the option of prioritizing the use of Wi-Fi or cellular for making phone calls
  • Authentication to help ensure that only authorized BlackBerry smartphones have access to the corporate phone system
  • Incoming call filtering based on allowed and blocked caller lists

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