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So is a BlackBerry-Specific BIS or BES Data Plan Still Required?


Ever since the memo from Verizon leaked out stating that BlackBerry Data Plans are not required, there has been quite a buzz asking if this is true or not. Now that BlackBerry 10 has officially launched, its time to visit this question. Is the BlackBerry Data Plan still a necessity?


Back in October last year, Tim from the BlackBerry Relations posted on the Dev Blog the following:

Should you decide to get a microSIM for your Dev Alpha, you do not need to have “BlackBerry Data” turned on for the account. Connectivity will work with regular Internet access alone. Please note that this is the case just for the Dev Alpha device and not BlackBerry 10 launch devices, which will need to have BlackBerry data on the wireless plan.

This caused quite a confusion in conjunction with the Vodafone memo.

So, the guys over at OurBerries managed to get this clarified. In short you do not need a BIS data plan for a regular consumer BlackBerry 10 device. Things get a bit confusing with BES. Some carriers will not charge more for a BES plan but some will. That sucks for enterprises but its great news for consumers. Here are some quick questions answered:

No, BlackBerry Data Plans are no longer required for BlackBerry 10 devices, but will still remain a necessity for legacy devices.

There is also some answers to some commonly asked questions.

Question: Is my data still secure?
Answer: Yes, it is. Instead of relying on hardware, RIMBlackBerry has decided to go ahead with software encryption model instead.

Question: What benefits do I stand to gain?
Answer: Well, this can be rather technical. Your data now do not need to travel long distances as opposed to the standard BIS previously. With less travel distances, both you and your recipient can expect to receive messages or data faster. One less party in the transmission path, one less factor that will cause network disruptions (if any) in the future.

Also, you now can use any data plan on your BlackBerry 10 device, which is cheaper!

Question: How about the disadvantages?
Answer: We will lose a key feature in BlackBerry called DataSmart Technology. With all the telcos cutting down on data these days, data consumption has been a hot topic. A BlackBerry device was 4x more data friendly than rivaling devices and this is no longer true with BlackBerry 10. With the native browser able to emulate in both mobile or desktop mode, data consumption might just be on the rise. So while we gain better network speeds and stability, we actually lose this useful technology.

Question: So why, why remove it?!
Answer: These compression are all done on RIMBlackBerry’s end, on the server. By removing it out of the equation, it is hence, unable to get any more compressed than what a web server will send to your device. While it is true, for now, regarding the wireless data crunch, there is a strong believe that free data, via means such as wifi will be more and more readily available.

Question: What remains unchanged?
Answer: Well, the BlackBerry Push features and jazz will still be there. These won’t be affected and the security is no where compromised along this chain of communication. Expect notifications to work even harder with BlackBerry 10, though. We will cover how this will work technically later in the week as we take the time to speak with RIMBlackBerry executives.
In addition to the above, what remains unchanged is the standard BlackBerry Services. BBM, Emails, Facebook, Twitter etc will all remain usable. In short, all BlackBerry data or all data consumed by your devices will route through your telco only and not through RIMBlackBerry’s server. The BlackBerry experience hence, improves and does not go worse.

Via OurBerries Singapore

5 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. So when our Blackberry browsers are finally more and more usable (in terms of compatibility), carriers are charging more for data plans and Blackberry decides to kill one of the good features it has, WHY?
    I guess the world doesn’t care about data usage and all what people talk about is speed speed speed.
    What about security? are we going to be as vulnerable as the competitors???

  2. Bell Mobility confirms the user needs an active BIS plan to use the Z10.

  3. Can someone help me. I logged into my rogers Bis Page and when i did that it deleted all my recently added email addresses and my @rogers.blackberry address. I was able to re-add my other email addresses but I can’t add my @rogers.blackberry address anymore. All it lets me do is try and create another one.

  4. “…Yes, it is. Instead of relying on hardware, RIMBlackBerry has decided to go ahead with software encryption model instead….”

    So that’s mean security and encryption is compromise it terms
    of hardware vs software encryption.
    It is no anymore distinguish/advantage ob BB over other smartphones.

    What is a real reason to BB does this? they just give up all existing customers staying behind them in the hardest time.

    Well, it is a very sad news, It is no more BB it just one more smartphone on the market the same like others in terms of security and reliability. It is no reason tu go for BB10 at all.

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