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Blackberry Desktop for Mac: A Word of Warning

Blackberry Desktop for Mac has been available for about a month now. RIM has already released their first patch and the product seems to be stable. It provides a much better syncing experience than previous Blackberry software for Mac. Unfortunately, its default initial sync settings put your data at risk.

During your first sync, you will see the following dialog box:

BB Sync Dialog

Chances are, you do not want to make the default choice, "Replace device data." This choice will erase your Blackberry's contacts and calendars and replace it with the contacts and calendars stored on your computer. Most of us add phone numbers to our phones constantly, and many of us use the phone's calendar. Watch out for this potentially harmful default choice.

"Merge Data" is the choice most should make. This will combine the contacts, calendars, and tasks on your handheld and your computer.

Before you embark on a new syncing configuration, be sure to back up your handheld's databases and your computer's contacts, calendars, and tasks. If you need help doing this, feel free to reach out to us at Feedwire. In addition to wired sync, we can introduce you to wireless sync via Google or Blackberry Enterprise Server.

It Took Them Long Enough

Are you a Mac user? Are you a Blackberry user? RIM has just decided that they don't hate you anymore. They've announced BlackBerry Desktop for Mac, scheduled for release in September (hopefully they mean 2009.)

Third party syncing solutions have existed for quite some time for the mac, notably Pocket Mac (purchased by RIM) and The Missing Sync. Unfortunately they've behaved more like workarounds and hacks than solutions, causing almost as many problems as they solved. Here's RIM's official feature list:

  • Sync your iTunes® playlists, calendars, contacts, notes and tasks

  • Add/Remove applications

  • Update your device when new software becomes available

  • Backup and restore your device data with such features like automatically scheduled backups and optional encryption (security is #1 as always…)

  • Manage multiple devices

I'm most looking forward to backing up and upgrading BlackBerry software without having to resort to using a PC. This software, if RIM delivers what they've promised will make our customers' lives easier and enable us to work more quickly and efficiently for them. Combined with Apple's Mac OS 10.6 native exchange support, life is about to get much easier for our Blackberry Enterprise customers too. Here's to progress!