There is a good thread on BlackBerry Forums on removable media for BlackBerry with an excellent follow-up thread started by forums moderator Mark Rejon about adding removable memory securely to the BlackBerry. Many features common to most PDAs, removable memory being one of them, are not available on BlackBerry devices because of stringent security requirements.

You generally will find two schools of thought when it comes to features on the BlackBerry. The BlackBerry traditionalists want to add no feature that could ever possibly pose a security threat. The BlackBerry gadget freaks want so many bells and whistles that their BlackBerry could mistakenly be identified as a Star Trek Tricorder. I think that most BlackBerry users fall somewhere in the middle.

To quote Mark:

“Many of you know how RIM makes BlackBerry security a very high priority. Discussion has begun on how memory cards can be made 100% safe and secure:”

(The nutshell: Treat a flash memory card strictly as a semipermanent “memory upgrade module” – much like PC memory modules – and install it SIM-card-style behind the battery so it does not get lost – plus use existing memory Content Scrambling to make it 100% secure just like the built-in flash memory. Just imagine “File Free 512,426,048 Bytes Free” in Options->Status, when you start wanting to install massive stuff in the future such as GPS maps, real estate databases, video tours, massive medical databases, or other stuff that may become popular in the future. The memory card would be encrypted and totally unusable and non-portable in other BlackBerries or card readers)Ongoing discussion, started by a forum member, about accomplishing 100% safely and 100% securely implemented memory upgrades, for future BlackBerry models (using flash media as a “memory upgrade module” instead) – Click Here to go to the “Removable Memory” Thread

I think that some sort of secure removable memory for the BlackBerry is only inevitable. I just hope that it comes sooner than later.