My company is in the process of a slow migration from a simple Linux, Postfix, POP3 email server over to Zimbra - OSS. So far we have moved around 300 users over to Zimbra, and have about another 100 or so left on the old email system. The people we have left to migrate includes almost all of our Outside Sales force, which numbers around 70. These users currently have simple cellphones; however, there is a push within the organization to move them to some type of smart-phone so that they have more access to their email while on the road.

Outside the scope of this migration we also have about 20 Blackberry users. Since we do not have an Exchange server we have outsourced email for the these users to a third party who provide the necessary services so that these Blackberry users have full syncing, push email, etc. On one hand there has been some grousing amongst these users about the lack of support we receive from the 3rd party provider when they have issues. On the other hand they are generally happy with the Blackberries and some are pushing for the Outside Sales people to get them also.

I have limited knowledge of smart-phones. I don't do a lot of traveling for work, and when I'm home I'd just as soon fire up my laptop to check email. That said, I have been trying to get the organization to look at alternatives to the Blackberry for the following reasons: A) Right now, with us using the FOSS edition of Zimbra we would have to use the same, or a similar, 3rd party for Blackberry support. B) Even if we wanted to go the NE, with Zimbra mobile, native Blackberry support is not ready, so we would still need to go 3rd party. C) Even when native Blackberry support is available a BES server will still be necessary, which is another cost and another server to support.

Since I have limited knowledge and no experience with any of these devices, I am looking for suggestions, hopefully based on firsthand experience, of what alternatives to the Blackberry I can recommend that we evaluate. Since we are currently using the FOSS edition of Zimbra I would be interested in hearing about devices that work well with Zimbra with either POP3 or IMAP email, keeping in mind that a move the NE, with Zimbra Mobile, is a possibility in the future.

TIA,
John