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Blackboard Launches Enhanced Mobile Web and webOS Versions for Mobile Campus Services App
Feb 17, 2011 (03:02 PM EST)


Smart Mobile Web Application Offers a Richer User Experience

WASHINGTON, Feb. 17, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) continued its commitment to rapid development of its mobile applications for education with the announcement today of Smart Mobile Web access for Blackboard MobileCentral, the Company's popular campus life and services application, as well as a new, native application for Palm® webOS™ devices.

The new options further expand the number of users who can access the Blackboard Mobile Central suite of applications on a growing range of platforms and devices. Users can navigate interactive campus maps, access course catalogs, event calendars, campus news, sports scores and schedules, and even a campus directory that allows users to call or email instructors and classmates directly from the app.

Smart Mobile Web significantly improves the mobile Web version of the Blackboard Mobile Central suite, providing an enriched user experience with a look and feel similar to a native application. The Smart Mobile Web version also enables institutions to customize the app with school branding and colors. Meanwhile, the webOS application for Palm devices is a polished native application that conforms to the look and feel of webOS.

With the addition of webOS, Blackboard Mobile Central is now available in native applications for all major mobile platforms including Android™, BlackBerry®, iOS® for the Apple® iPhone® and iPod® touch. All of the versions are available at no extra cost to institutions using Blackboard Mobile Central, and the apps are free to students, instructors and others from the various app stores.

"With these new platforms available, an even larger part of the Florida State community can stay connected through FSU Mobile," said Michael Barrett, CIO at Florida State University. "Knowing Blackboard will continue to innovate and support such a broad range of mobile devices and platforms makes them truly a trusted partner in helping us engage the FSU community and provide the best possible user experience."

"One of the core facets of our philosophy is to design elegant applications that truly leverage the uniqueness of a platform's user interface paradigms," said Kayvon Beykpour, Vice President of Blackboard Mobile. "Our HP webOS Blackboard Mobile Central application is no exception. We're thrilled to provide this support for webOS users at current and prospective institutions. And with our release of a Smart Mobile Web version, users with smartphones other than the ones we provide native applications for can also enjoy a robust experience through mobile Web."

Smart Mobile Web for Blackboard Mobile Central supports browsers utilizing WebKit or Gecko layout engines or other modern browsers like Internet Explorer® 8 and Opera. This includes most iOS, Android, webOS and Windows Phone 7™ devices. The Blackboard Mobile Central mobile Web platform will automatically direct users to the best version for their devices. The Smart Mobile Web version includes Maps, Courses, Athletics, Directory, Events, News and Library.

The new webOS application for Palm devices includes Maps, Courses, Athletics, Directory, Events, News, Library, Videos, Images, Get Help and Links. Developed as a native application for the webOS platform, Blackboard Mobile Central for webOS leverages a device's unique features to provide an engaging user experience, including:

  • Implements navigation in Palm using the native back gesture.
  • Efficiently uses space on the screen eliminating the need to have soft key icons/buttons.
  • Displays numbered results in Directory search (unique to the Palm Blackboard Mobile Central app)
  • Tint colors for creating a unique brand identity

For more information about Blackboard Mobile Central, the new webOS application and the Smart Mobile Web version, please visit: http://www.blackboard.com/Platforms/Mobile/Products/Mobile-Central.aspx.

About Blackboard Inc.

Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) is a global leader in enterprise technology and innovative solutions that improve the experience of millions of students and learners around the world every day. Blackboard's solutions allow thousands of higher education, K-12, professional, corporate, and government organizations to extend teaching and learning online, facilitate campus commerce and security, and communicate more effectively with their communities. Founded in 1997, Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard and other statements containing the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will," and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including the factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of our Form 10-Q filed on November 5, 2010 with the SEC. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company's views as of February 17, 2011. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company's views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company's views as of any date subsequent to February 17, 2011.

Palm and webOS are among the trademarks or registered trademarks owned by or licensed to Palm, Inc.

Android is a trademark of Google Inc. Use of this trademark is subject to Google Permissions.

The BlackBerry and RIM families of related marks, images and symbols are the exclusive properties and trademarks of Research In Motion Limited.

Apple, iOS, iPhone and iPod touch are registered trademarks of Apple Inc.

SOURCE Blackboard Inc.