Research In Motion (RIM) has announced a series of upgrades to the BlackBerry platform, which brings improved messaging, enhanced security, and simplified device management to the table.

Some of the upgrades where user experience is concerned are:

  • It will be possible to view and edit documents in their native format directly from the BlackBerry — courtesy of Document To Go by DataViz
  • Remote searches for e-mail messages stored on the server can be performed directly from the BlackBerry smartphone
  • E-mails containing HTML, images, and rich text e-mail will be rendered accordingly

In addition, the inclusion of a new Web Desktop Manager will simplify software upgrades by allowing users to install software on their computer and manage their device via a browser.

The new features will be phased into software releases in the first half of the year. You can check out the press release from RIM here.

I must say that this is a major upgrade, requiring substantial coding and architectural changes in the BlackBerry platform. Some of the announced features mirror what Microsoft has rolled out in Windows Mobile 6 and Exchange Server 2007, so RIM must be feeling the heat.

In case you are interested, I wrote a primer on push mail a while back. In the meantime, do you prefer RIM’s BlackBerry or Microsoft’s Direct Push?