BlackBerrys and Macs, Part II: RIM BlackBerry Desktop Manager v. Missing Sync

This second installment in CIO.com's three-part series examining the relationship between BlackBerry smartphones and Apple Mac computers lists a handful of device management features available to Mac users via Missing Sync, a BlackBerry Desktop Manager for PC alternative.

Research In Motion's (RIM) BlackBerry Desktop Manager software, which lets PC users perform data backup and restore processes, update handheld operating systems (OS), configure BlackBerry corporate settings and more, runs only on Windows PCs. That means BlackBerry users with Apple Mac computers don't have access to the full line of device management features available to PC users--unless they're running Parallels or another similar program that enables Apple computers to run Windows alongside other operating systems.

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Mac users aren't completely out of luck, however; there are a couple of third-party device management options for Apple computers: PocketMac and Missing Sync.

Last week, we compared the BlackBerry Desktop Manager software with PocketMac, a free desktop management solution for BlackBerry users with Apple computers. Today, we're lining up BlackBerry Desktop Manager and Missing Sync, a $39.99 piece of Mac software from Mark/Space ($49.99 for CD ROM version), to see how the two measure up.

screen shot   of Missing Sync for BlackBerry
Missing Sync for BlackBerry

The following list details the features available to Mac users in the Missing Sync software, along with the functionality afforded to PC users via BlackBerry Desktop Manager. System requirements for both BlackBerry Desktop Manager and Missing Sync are also listed beneath the chart.

BlackBerry Desktop Manager v. Missing Sync

BlackBerry Desktop Manager Missing Sync
Address book/calendar sync Yes Yes
Notes/tasks sync Yes Yes
Backup and restore Yes No
Load Third-Party Apps Yes No
Update Handheld Software Yes No
Configure BES E-Mail Settings Yes No
Tethered Modem Yes No
Automated Device Switch Yes No
Bookmark Synch No No
Media Mgmt. for the Handheld Yes Limited
Media Sync Yes Limited

Missing Sync System Requirements:

  • PowerPC G4, PowerPC G5, or Intel processor

  • Mac OS X Tiger 10.4.8 or later

  • Mac OS X Leopard 10.5 or later

  • Internet connection for product registration

RIM BlackBerry Desktop Manager v4.5 System Requirements:

  • An Internet/email-enabled computer

  • One available USB or serial port

  • The Microsoft Windows OS in one of these versions, with a USB port: Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista including x64 bit support

  • With a serial port: Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista

Additional information on the BlackBerry Desktop Manager software can be found on RIM's website. And more details on Missing Sync, including a list of all supported BlackBerry devices, is located on the Mark Space site.

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