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Old 02-12-2011, 07:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

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In summary we are a small company where at max we will need to kit out 5 people with phones this year and maybe another 5 next year. Our business is very international and we are getting massive charges for email and internet use when roaming.
We’d heard that if we all got Blackberries then we could enjoy international free internet / not free but very reasonably charged compared to the competition.
But I am on Vodafone in the UK and they have a Blackberry but there is nothing on the website that says anything about Blackberries being any different to any other smart phone? My boss looked in Singapore and also drew a blank.

So, the questions:

(1) Does very cheap internet when roaming exist on Blackberry or is it a myth?

(2) I see with Vodafone the plans say “includes BB email service” but there is no explanation as to what this is. What is it please?

(3) Our resident IT expert said we might have to buy a BB server to take full advantage of BB to BB benefits but the cost of such a server will be more than it’s worth if there’s only 5 people using it?

We use Google for our mail. Am I better off getting an Android and then using a service like Skype Access or Boingo?

Thanks in advance,

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Old 02-12-2011, 02:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Welcome to the Forums.

The questions youxxx8217;re asking are all dependent on the carrier you choose. As you suspect, roaming charges and even calling charges can be extremely high. Depending on the countries you need, you first have to see if one carrier fits. Not all cover everywhere. There are ways to xxx8220;unlockxxx8221; a cell phone so different carriers can be used thereby allowing use in a different country. All this may sound good but if you need direct email service to the BB or any cell phone for that matter you will have to do a lot of research. The BB is definitely a business tool used by most international business travelers. Its use in your company will depend on its ability to do what you need at a reasonable cost. Just keep in mind it wonxxx8217;t be cheap no matter what you choose but those costs may be reasonable if they allow your business to function flawlessly and maintain or increase profits.
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Old 02-12-2011, 11:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Consider bringing in a professional to survey your needs, work habits, and budget.
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Old 02-13-2011, 01:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Quote:
The questions youxxx8217;re asking are all dependent on the carrier you choose.
The thing is we have 1 guy based in London, 1 in Belgium, 1 in Singapore for a start. So choosing a BB for one might be a great idea, but not for the others?

Quote:
As you suspect, roaming charges and even calling charges can be extremely high. Depending on the countries you need, you first have to see if one carrier fits. Not all cover everywhere.
This is a big part of the problem. The countries we have been to in the last 2 months are not developed countries:

-Guatemala, Viet Nam, Thailand and Malaysia. Next plans are to go to Bangladesh and Burma!

Quote:
The BB is definitely a business tool used by most international business travelers. Its use in your company will depend on its ability to do what you need at a reasonable cost. Just keep in mind it wonxxx8217;t be cheap no matter what you choose but those costs may be reasonable if they allow your business to function flawlessly and maintain or increase profits.
Certainly agree on the last point, I am just not sure at the moment how a BB will increase our productivity over a standard smart phone using Skype Access or Boingo when there's only 5 of us?
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Old 02-13-2011, 11:13 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

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Originally Posted by tsac View Post
Welcome to the Forums.

The questions youxxx8217;re asking are all dependent on the carrier you choose. As you suspect, roaming charges and even calling charges can be extremely high. Depending on the countries you need, you first have to see if one carrier fits. Not all cover everywhere. There are ways to xxx8220;unlockxxx8221; a cell phone so different carriers can be used thereby allowing use in a different country. All this may sound good but if you need direct email service to the BB or any cell phone for that matter you will have to do a lot of research. The BB is definitely a business tool used by most international business travelers. Its use in your company will depend on its ability to do what you need at a reasonable cost. Just keep in mind it wonxxx8217;t be cheap no matter what you choose but those costs may be reasonable if they allow your business to function flawlessly and maintain or increase profits.

now if i could figure out where the xxx8221 stuff came from i would be happy. Maybe it's an excuse to but a new pc
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Old 02-15-2011, 09:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

So is it basically the case that to get the most out of blackberry (which to us means cheap data and email abroad) we will need to:

- Invest in a BB server
- All go on BB contracts in our respective home countries

If so, how much does a BB server cost? My colleague tells me you need 100+ employees using it before it starts becoming economically viable?

Thanks for your help again.
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Old 02-15-2011, 10:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Instead of a BlackBerry Enterprise Server you could use a hosted BES service with a provider like ExchangeMyMail.

And yes, each person should get BB service in his home country.
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Old 02-16-2011, 01:28 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rambo47 View Post
Instead of a BlackBerry Enterprise Server you could use a hosted BES service with a provider like ...... [edited because as a new member I can't put links in my posts]

And yes, each person should get BB service in his home country.
Thanks for the advice, appreciated.

Again, being such a small company we don't have MS Exchange Server (we use Google Mail). The boss won't want to get the exchange server

As such I think I am coming to the conclusion that BB might not be the right option for us
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:06 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

And the key is that BB service is very patchy in developing countries so signal is always an issue so BB solution may not be reliable. But still its a great option for someone sitting in Singapore because you can contact that person with leisure and in time.
You may not be able to provide the homogeneous same solution to whole gang but your key contacts could be well connected if they are in rightly covered globe surface
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:45 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

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Originally Posted by joginder View Post
And the key is that BB service is very patchy in developing countries so signal is always an issue so BB solution may not be reliable.
Well that seals it really... if anything we will be moving into *lesser* developed countries than I listed above!

Thanks all
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Old 02-18-2011, 08:26 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

I have been through this issue and there are a few points to note here.

Quite correct to always have a BB in your home (greatest use) country. However sounds like me, you are flitting between countries all the time regardless of base.

If you really want to save money, get local SIM cards for calls in every country you travel to. I have a wallet-load. This will fix your roaming costs for VOICE and potentially for data too. Both are HORRENDOUSLY expensive. I used to get $3000 bills every month. Now I pay $300/m for all my calls and data.

I have a cheap BB service on a $49 capped voice plan from Australia where I spend 50% of my time. I use BIS - which would be fine for your company I would imagine.

When I go overseas, I use the local SIMs on a 2 SIM phone (the type that has 2 radios always on, not switching between SIMs). I put voice on my home phone to voicemail (and can see all my SMSs instantly - incl voicemail notifications which are also by SMS) I use local data and voice calls only from the local SIM. Note that the SIM for the BB will work in any GSM phone, but you can only get the BB BIS data service in a BB using a SIM that has been provisioned with BB service.

As a BACKUP, I always have the benefit of putting my Oz SIM into my BB and getting service. Rarely I have used that though.

When in Aus, I only use my BB and never exceed my cap.

I use Skype and VOIP extensively for my international calling. This is not practical using a BB, so I use the laptop with a BT headset. Wifi is ubiquitous in the developed and undeveloped world now and calling using these methods for 90% of calls is usually convenient for me. If the local SIM carrier has 3G and the data rate plan is reasonable, I find it is also good to use - but not in the BB.

I hope that this is helpful. Skype me on ID iporter if you want to discuss.
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Old 02-19-2011, 11:36 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Blackberry's are a wise investment for all company's. The security is what's most important when sending and receiving personal and work related data. I cannot post any articles yet due to the fact that I am a new member. If you go to search the KB's do a search for KB05429. This article talks about the security that the Blackberry has to offer. Have you considered BES express? There are less IT polices but the software is free.
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:58 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

KB05429-Recommendation on the use of Triple DES or AES for BlackBerry transport layer encryption
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Old 02-20-2011, 12:26 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is BB the right investment for 5 people in a company who are roaming?

Perhaps you would be best served with a handful of older Motorola Q phones. You won't get push email, wireless calendar sync, or any of the other features that make BlackBerry so compelling, but they will function all around the world on whatever GSM cellular infrastructure is available. Some Nokia E-series phones might be good as well.
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