Technology & Science

RIM, Hewlett-Packard team on mobile services

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion and computer giant Hewlett-Packard Co. said Monday they have formed an alliance to provide mobile services for the BlackBerry.

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion and computer giant Hewlett-Packard Co. said Monday they have formed an alliance to provide mobile services for the BlackBerry.

These services will include an application called HP CloudPrint that will allow BlackBerry users to print email, documents, images and websites directly from their devices to any printer in their network.

The services also include support of BlackBerry's Enterprise Server 5.0, which launched earlier this year. HP, known best for selling computers and printers, has been making more of a move into business services.

Last year the company spent $13.9 billion US to buy computer services firm EDS, which already had an existing relationship with Waterloo, Ont.-based RIM and manages close to 500,000 Blackberrys for clients.

HP already manufacturers and markets its own line of iPAQ smartphones, which run on Microsoft software.

But HP Canada chief technologist Victor Garcia said the company isn't afraid to pursue multiple platforms when offering its services, and the partnership with BlackBerry doesn't mean it's abandoning its own devices.

BlackBerry smartphones are ubiquitous in the business world however, and Garcia said the mobile device's platform has earned its reputation as "the most trusted mobile ecosystem."

One service that will be available immediately allows BlackBerry users to manage their servers, databases and software, said Garcia.

The CloudPrint service, however, is currently being tested by employees at HP Canada and RIM this year, and won't be available until early 2010, he said.