We've been on Zimbra for more than two years, but just in the past month or two we've been having many users express interest in having their handhelds sync up with the Zimbra server. For the iPhone it was very simple: set up an account using the Microsoft Exchange setup and enter the Zimbra server information. That worked like a charm and now the iPhone users are getting all of their data over the air directly from the Zimbra server with no extra setup on the back end.
My question is about Blackberries. I've combed over the forums, and in everything that I've found, there is no way to sync a Blackberry directly with a Zimbra server, you have to have a BES. We are at a pretty critical decision point right now as there are about 25 users whose Blackberry contracts with their phone providers are coming up for renewal and the way we see it, we have two options if we want to get over-the-air syncing for them on handhelds:
1) Shell out the money for the BES and stick with the Blackberries. From the pricing on Blackberry's site, that looks like it will be somewhere in the neighborhood of $4500 for us just for the BES license plus the time spent configuring and managing the BES, easily bringing the TCO of keeping the Blackberries up over $5000.
2) Switch over to iPhones for roughly the same cost, but save the hassle of configuring another server and have something that just works with our existing setup.
Does that sound reasonable, or is there something I'm missing about being able to connect a Blackberry directly to the Zimbra server as I have been able to do with the iPhone? Any suggestions would be much appreciated.