BlackBerry Forums Support Community               

Closed Thread
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 07-15-2005, 12:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
ptk
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Model: none
Posts: 4
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default BlackBerry devices for small business

Please Login to Remove!

I've got a fairly broad question that will hopefully stimulate some discussion and eventually answer all my questions. My company is looking to purchase about 6 BlackBerry devices, and I know next to nothing about them. Unfortunately, I'm in charge of the purchase, and I can't think of a better way to get up to speed than speaking with everyday users. For starters, what is a good round number to expect to spend for the devices and a year's worth of service? What, in your opinions, should I be looking for, and what should I avoid? I know you're going to want to know what they want to use them for, and I'll be honest, I don't really know. If you guys can give me a good idea of questions to ask, I'll make sure to do so.

Thanks to all who read this.

ptk
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 12:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
CrackBerry Addict
 
ladydi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Washington
Model: 8800
Carrier: T-mobile
Posts: 848
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

The cost is going to depend on your situation. Are you a gov organization? they get pretty good discounts. We only pay about $150 per device and $80 month in service and we only have 10 BB. Are you planning on using a BES? That can get really pricey, but is a better way to manage your BB's. If you are not gov and currently have a contract with a cell carrier, they might give you a better deal on a bulk order. Despite the cost, I highly recomend going with a BES. you could get away with a small business version as long as you don't ever plan on having more than 20 devices. Also, I would make sure that you got unlimited data plans because it adds up fast. Good luck and welcome to the wonderful world of BB. BTW, are you one of the lucky recipients of a BB?
__________________
~Di~
Windows 2003
Exchange 2003
BES 4.1
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 12:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
ptk
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Model: none
Posts: 4
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

We are not a government organization. I don't know what the pros and cons are of a BES, but I'm making the assumption that it's a little more than we need right now. We won't ever have more than 20 devices. We currently have a wireless plan through T-Mobile, so I checked their site to see what they could offer. They seemed quite expensive. I saw pricing on the same model anywhere from $50 after a rebate to $375. Of course, the $50 deal required some sort of contract for something, but the technology is new to me, so I really didn't really know what to make of it. Would you suggest buying directly from a Cingular/Verizon/(Other provider) or is it a better deal to search out the lowest price and figure out service later?

ptk

p.s. - I don't think I'll personally be getting one of them :(
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 12:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Model: 7520
Posts: 1
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Carriers

Make sure you contact your carrier first to see what phones you currently are locked into rate plans on that may not be of use anymore or are being replaced by the blackberry devices. If you are within 6 months of your three year contract expiry date you should be eligible for a Blackberry upgrade offer. The monthly service cost will be non-negotiable but they may be able to include free feature bundles (vmail etc..) depending on how long you have been a client with them. Also make sure you asked to be assigned to an outside sales rep so that you can have one point of contact for handling your account. The above may not apply to all carriers but have been true from the two in Canada that I have worked for since the blackberry came out. If you are in Canada I could help you further.
JB>
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 12:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
Thumbs Must Hurt
 
Girion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Southern California
Model: 9530
OS: 4.7.0.151
PIN: T of Guinness plz
Carrier: Verizon
Posts: 147
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

My company is a medium sized credit union on California, and we brought BB on board about a little over a year ago. We have 18 units, and 2 mobile phones deployed thru our staff.

The Enterprise Server (BES) is VERY advantageous to have, but it helps to have an IT guy who can do all your installation and upgrades. If you have an person in charge of IT (and can afford the one time expense) I think you'd find that to be a great thing to have, especially if you do a large portion of your business via e-mail, or need to be in constant contact.

As far as the devices go, they typically run around $299USD with various and sundry discounts. We are moving from one carrier to another, and upgrading from the 7280 comparable unit to the 7290 unit, at $75USD per unit. We already have the BES 4.0 and the new firmware is preinstalled on the units. For six units, its likely you'd have to pay close to retail price, but shop around for the best deal you can get.

You're geographic area will determine what carrier is best for you...T-Mo, Cingular, and Verizon all have different programs for small business, but if their coverage is crappy in your area, it cheap hardware doesn't benefit you much (we found this out the hard way)

Good luck to you in your search...our lives have not been the same since we acquired our devices. There two timelines...BBB and ABB - Before and After Blackberry.
__________________
-GIRION

"For pretty things that serve no use, the true art finds its tether.
To those who know illumination comes wickless in the nether."
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 03:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
ptk
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Model: none
Posts: 4
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

I'd be willing to look into the BES, but I don't know that it would integrate with our current setup. We don't use Exchange, Domino, or GroupWise. Our e-mail server is MDaemon, so i don't know how possible it is to integrate that. We will most likely be upgrading to Exchange at the end of the year if I have anything to say about it (which I do), so would we be able to incorporate the BES later on?
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 03:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
Thumbs Must Hurt
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Houston
Model: 7520
Carrier: Nextel
Posts: 76
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

We have a small business running about 5 Blackberries. After I weighed the Pros/Cons of different devices, features, and carrier choices in the Houston area, I settled on Nextel. My 2nd Choice in the Houston area was Cingular, and then either Verizon or T-mobile, each having their own advantages.
Why we choose Nextel:
1. We did not want to spend the $ on BES, and we wanted TCP/IP public IP address.
Nextel was for us the easiest choice. Needed IP address for MobileSSH into our Unix.
2. We liked the look & feel of the 7520 over the 7250. Liked the speakerphone too.
3. We wanted the Nextel Direct Connect walkie-talkie. Works good for short communications.
4. We liked the idea of Telenav and mobile locator.
5. Nextel had a good sales rep in our area that kept his appointment. The other carrier's sales rep's in OUR area were not reliable and not as knowledgable as our Nextel Rep. Our Nextel rep knew how to help us connect to our Unix system.
6. Nextel was the only carrier in our area to offer a plan with UNLIMITED voice minutes.
7. Nextel doesn't have roaming charges. I can count on the bill being fairly consistant.

So, we went with Nextel, and so far it has been really good.
I wish Cingular would have been a good fit for us, because that is the carrier my wife has, but ... oh well.
We have been happy with Nextel customer service. Now with the Sprint buyout, who knows what will happen.
Good luck
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 03:50 PM   #8 (permalink)
ptk
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Model: none
Posts: 4
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

Funny you should mention Nextel. Apparently our lawyers are talking to them. They were our cellular service provider before we switched to T-Mobile and they claim we owe them $2000 for early termination. We did not terminate the contract that we have in our possession early, however, they claim to have some other paperwork that differs from what we have. Will they fax us a copy? No. That's the summary anyway, and that was a year ago. Still unresolved.

Anyway, if I suggest Nextel, I'll probably be fired. That doesn't mean your experience with them isn't great, ours just apparently wasn't. It was before my time though, so I really don't know that much. I don't think the BES makes sense for us either, I suppose I just have to call a rep get the ball rolling. I just wanted to get some initial impressions from you all and get to know the material better so that they couldn't sell me everything under the sun.

Thanks.

ptk
Offline  
Old 07-15-2005, 04:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
Thumbs Must Hurt
 
Girion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Southern California
Model: 9530
OS: 4.7.0.151
PIN: T of Guinness plz
Carrier: Verizon
Posts: 147
Post Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default

If you are upgrading to Exchange, the BES will be a great addition at that point. You can always purchase it later on (after your purchase of the hardware devices) and as the BES is agnostic of carrier, if you decide to change service providers later on down the road, you can still continue to use your Enterprise Server with a new wireless vendor.

Oh and regarding the unlimited data feature on your plans...use it. Nothings worse than being charged for e-mail.
__________________
-GIRION

"For pretty things that serve no use, the true art finds its tether.
To those who know illumination comes wickless in the nether."
Offline  
Closed Thread


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On





Copyright 2004-2014 BlackBerryForums.com.
The names RIM and BlackBerry are registered Trademarks of BlackBerry Inc.