Nokia broadens line of business phones

A new device aims to give data capabilities a wider appeal, while an Intellisync update can manage devices from most vendors

Nokia has unveiled an addition to its E series of business devices, launched last year. The E50 is a cheap, voice-centric device that comes with or without a camera.

The quad-band EDGE phone, which should be available during this quarter, will share characteristics with the rest of the E series — such as email support for a number of providers including RIM and Visto — but is designed to appeal to a broader, non-executive user base.

Pekka Isosomppi from Nokia's enterprise division said: "The devices are optimised for data, but they are voice workhorses as well."

He added: "All of [the E series] are very similar but there is variety in terms of price." The E50 will come in at 300 euros (£204) without tax or subsidies.

Nokia has also taken the wraps off its updated device management service, which is designed to let executives deal with the perennial problem of mobiles and laptops making their way out of the office and into the back of taxis, never to be seen again.

The Finnish handset giant has extended its Intellisync Device Management offering for Open Mobile Alliance Device Management compliant devices, including BlackBerrys and handhelds running on the Microsoft, Palm or Symbian OS.

The service will let IT admins set security policies and configure devices remotely without software installation, as well as give them the ability to lock and wipe the devices if lost or stolen. Administrators will also be able to deploy software over the air and use the device management service to take an inventory of their mobile devices.

Nokia is targeting both carriers and enterprises with the service, allowing bigger organisations with specialist requirements to deploy it in-house — and SMEs without the specialist knowledge to opt to let their network provider take care of it.

Prices will start from around $90 (£48) per seat. The device management service, which Nokia initially acquired when it bought mobile email provider Intellisync, has already been picked up by Finnish mobile operator Elisa which is offering the service to its corporate clients.