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Reliance Comm unveils BlackBerry services

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Allows interoperability between CDMA and GSM networks

Tapping high-end customers: Mr Prakash Bajpai, President-Enterprise Solutions, Reliance Communications, and Mr Norm Lo, Vice-President, Research in Motion, at the launch of BlackBerry 8830 World Edition smartphone in Mumbai on Monday. — Paul Noronha
Tapping high-end customers: Mr Prakash Bajpai, President-Enterprise Solutions, Reliance Communications, and Mr Norm Lo, Vice-President, Research in Motion, at the launch of BlackBerry 8830 World Edition smartphone in Mumbai on Monday. — Paul Noronha

Our Bureau

Mumbai, Sept. 10 Reliance Communications has announced the launch of Canada-based Research in Motion’s BlackBerry services in India, a move aimed to acquire higher-end subscribers.

BlackBerry services typically lead to Average Revenue Per User levels that are eight to 10 times higher than usual, or around Rs 2,000-Rs 3,000 a month, said Mr Prakash Bajpai, President, RCom, Home and Enterprise business.

One of the four BlackBerry phones being offered by RCom is the 8830 World Edition smartphone, something that the company officials claimed has been introduced only in the US so far.

This phone (priced at Rs 33,990) allows interoperability between CDMA and GSM networks.

While the customer can make use of the more efficient data services of CDMA, he can also get international roaming whenever he moves into the more prevalent GSM network. Currently, many high-end customers do not find CDMA connections convenient because they do not allow for seamless international roaming.

Initial services

RCom’s BlackBerry services will be introduced in 16 cities to start with, said Mr Bajpai.

He said that he expected both enterprise customers as well as individuals to subscribe to the services. At the enterprise level, services will be available at Rs 699 per month and for individual customers at Rs 1,099 per month, both allowing for unlimited data.

RCom has also launched BlackBerry for GSM, starting with an offer in Indore.

The company said it offered Bloomberg services, online trading capabilities (through Reliance Money), video streaming and many other applications through its BlackBerry service.

Power point presentations, integration with the office board line network, and the like will also be possible.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 11, 2007)
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