| | 11-11-2011, 10:23 PM Thread Author #1
BlackBerry Email and the Technology Behind It!
Smartphone users these days can agree on one thing – BlackBerry Email experience is one of a kind and is unmatched by any of its competitors. If you never had a BlackBerry, you are blind since you were born, so you can’t really tell what you are missing. If you did have a BlackBerry and also used a competing device, you should know although you may not have realized it.
It is beyond magic what these RIM devices are capable of doing. I call them magic because we, the end-users, don’t really appreciate the enormous and complex tasks the BlackBerry devices perform to bring the email experience we can’t live without. It just works. The fact that our emails get delivered to our BlackBerry often even before it shows up on our desktop email client (e.g. Outlook) is anything more than astonishing. Do we really care? No. But do we love it? **** yes! But that’s not my point. It goes to show how RIM has pushed the boundaries of its push technologies to the max that no one is able come close to. Despite claims from its competitors that they also have push technology, it is misleading at most and really depends on how they (re)define the technology itself.
What they really do is a poke and pull – far from what push was really meant to be. The device at a certain interval (e.g. every 10-30 seconds) goes to the server and asks a simple question – I’ve got mail? That is the poke. Server would then respond with a yes and no answer. And if it’s a yes, the device will download the new emails. That is the pull. I still don’t see how they can still call it push. As a user, you may not realize the implications of this model and may not care but you will when you are done reading this. Imagine your device asking the server the same question every 10-30 seconds 24/7. What do you think your battery life would be? Also, add the fact that in 80% of the cases, you will not have any new emails. So you essentially wasted your battery and piled up data charges just to hear that you do not have any new emails in 80% of the cases. Do you care now? I hope you do!
On the contrary, what RIM does is completely different and elegant. When there is new email in your mail server, the BlackBerry Enterprise Server or the BlackBerry Internet Service simply finds where the device is no matter where you are in the world (magic again). Oh btw, if it can’t find you, it will queue up your emails and will deliver them as soon as you are back in to network coverage. Once you are found, the email is TRULY pushed to your device without any poking whatsoever. No wonder BlackBerry devices run forever on a single charge and costs 10 times less data. Add to all that, the auto encryption of your data for security and auto compression for further reduction in data usage.
One other thing I wanted to clarify is that RIM’s push technology is not for emails only – it is for any data – think Calendars, Contacts, Memos, Tasks as well as 3rd party applications such as news readers, facebook etc.
I was tempted to write this short article because RIM is so bad with its marketing campaigns and they do not know how to capitalize on their strengths. Saying we have the best push technology is Hebrew to most of us but saying why it is important to us, and what difference it makes to our lives is something we will understand.
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