Research In Motion Ltd., which makes the popular BlackBerry, wants to strengthen its grip on the enterprise by adding support for Web services to the device's application-development environment. RIM said last week that its next-generation development framework, the BlackBerry Mobile Data System v4.1, includes XML Web Services among its methods for integrating mobile applications with back-end servers, and supports the Microsoft .Net and Java 2 Enterprise Edition environments. It also offers a new visual-design tool for easier development and centralized deployment and management of applications.

BlackBerry MDS v4.1 will be provided to some customers for beta testing this month, with general availability coming later this year.

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