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Research In Motion has a fix to the problem of juggling your work and personal life on a single mobile device, and it’s called BlackBerry Balance.
The software, which is expected to be available in two months, will let RIM’s devices separate user’s personal data — including social network apps, photos and the Web browser — from traditional BlackBerry work applications, like email sent from a BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), Reuters reports. For RIM, which has struggled to distinguish its older software from the newer operating systems found on iPhones and Android devices, it could prove a key differentiator.
RIM says that carriers are currently testing Balance on phones, and that it will also be available on the company’s hotly anticipated BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. The company says the PlayBook is due in March and will including around 4,000 third-party apps when it launches.
The software would basically give users two phones in one. With Balance, RIM will end up granting users more freedom over work-provided BlackBerry devices. It could potentially also allow users to access work data with their personal BlackBerry without having it reconfigured by their company’s IT department. Instead of bringing their personal iPhone or Android smartphone to work, Balance would allow employees to have a single device that serves both work and personal purposes.
Consumers probably aren’t clamoring for easier ways to be tied to work when at home, but the software could be appealing to workaholics everywhere. VMware is also looking into something similar with mobile virtualization, and I suspect we’ll see many other solutions on other mobile platforms to help manage the divide between work and personal data.
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