It’s nearly a waste of breath to say that the iPhone is a super hot ticket. With cool factor, pinchable photos, applications galore and gigs on top of gigs for music, who isn't enamored? However true that may be, it doesn’t change the fact that business execs are, in surprising numbers, staying loyal (addicted?) to their BlackBerries.

And that little factoid is exactly why the recent announcement of the deployable package of Google Maps for Mobile through BlackBerry Enterprise Server is another way of saying "Hey, Christmas came early!" to crack-berried suits all over the globe.

Features, Features, Features!

Maybe you are one of the aforementioned BlackBerry lovers, or maybe you don’t have AT&T, or maybe some other strange force has kept you from purchasing an iPhone and basking in all of its Inspector Gadget-like glory. Or maybe (hopefully) refreshing your memory of all the cool benefits to having Google Maps accessible by mobile device is something you’re totally into. Whatever the case, here’s what they have to offer:

  • My Location: This little feature is especially cool because it shows you your location on a map, even if you don’t have GPS. Google is magic like that. Not satisfied with that explanation? Feel free to wander on over to Google’s My Location video demo.
  • Interactive Maps: Just like the Google Maps for desktop. Pan and zoom the map, view satellite imagery, and switch to Street View for an even closer look. Not sure if the house you’re standing outside of for your blind date is the right one? Problem solved!
  • Business Listings: Here you can search for local businesses and points of interest, plus view store hours and reviews, then dial the business in a single click. Nifty. Also, thanks to the magic that is My Location, you can also search businesses near your person without having to actually enter your location.
  • Directions: Again, without entering your starting point, you can retrieve turn-by-turn driving directions, walking directions and public transportation routes for over 100 cities around the world.
  • Traffic: Avoid all the bottlenecking with real-time traffic reports.
  • Favorites: Save all of your favorite locations for easy retrieval.

OK, I Have a BlackBerry and I Need All of Those Features, NOW

Itching for another fix after Qik's recent extension of mobile goodies to BlackBerry devices? We don't blame you. BlackBerry Enterprise Server IT admins can select from any of the following methods of software deployment for Google Maps:

  • Download the ALX package for BlackBerry Enterprise Server to give employees Google Maps for mobile.
  • Download the JAD/COD package if you would like to host the files internally and have your employees individually install Google Maps.
  • If you use access control policies to restrict installation of applications on corporate BlackBerry phones, download the workaround ALX package for BlackBerry Enterprise Server versions prior to 4.1.5 MR1.

Not an IT admin? Go ahead and download Google Maps for Mobile and contact your IT administrator. Best of luck!