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SyncML Initiative Founded to Develop the World's First True Universal Standard for Data Synchronization

Initiative Includes Industry Leaders IBM, Lotus, Motorola, Nokia, Palm Inc., Psion and Starfish Software

Libertyville, Illinois - 22 Feb 2000: -- IBM, Lotus, Motorola, Nokia, Palm Inc., Psion and Starfish Software announced today they have founded the SyncML, a new initiative to develop and promote an open industry specification for universal synchronization of remote data and personal information consistent across multiple networks, platforms and devices. SyncML is an XML-based synchronization protocol designed to create the optimal mobile computing experience by supporting enhanced data synchronization, including e-mail, calendar, contact management information, enterprise data stored in databases, Web-based documents, and new forms of content from systems available in the future. The SyncML Initiative is open for industry partners to join in developing the specification.

The demand for instant access to information and applications anytime, anywhere is on the rise due to the growing number of mobile computing professionals. It is generally estimated that there will be more mobile devices than PCs connected to the Internet by the end of 2003. The SyncML specification will enable the creation of interoperable wireless and wireline data synchronization products across corporate servers, Web servers, computers, laptops, PDAs, handheld computers, mobile phones and other mobile devices, regardless of platform or manufacturer.

Currently, data synchronization is based on multiple sets of different protocols, each one functioning with a limited number of data types, devices or systems. The SyncML Initiative will deliver an open industry specification, which will enable a new generation of universal interoperability between systems and devices. Personal and enterprise information, including e-mail, calendars, Web calendars, to-do lists, contact information and other critical data, will be accessible regardless of where the information is stored, giving users unmatched flexibility in the device they select to use while on the move.

The founding members of The SyncML Initiative have identified the following goals to achieve the successful development and adoption of an industry-wide synchronization standard:

- Leverage existing open standards for structured data representation and industry object types
- Operate over wireless and wireline networks
- Support a variety of transport protocols
- Support arbitrary networked data
- Provide data access from a variety of applications
- Connect mobile devices regardless of platform or manufacturer
- Use existing Internet and Web standards and technologies
- Providing easily accessible code for enabling support for the specification.

The SyncML Initiative will leverage industry standards Extensible Markup Language (XML), MIME, the vCard and the iCalendar to represent Internet data, e-mail information, personal contact information, and calendaring information. Extending beyond currently available data synchronization technologies, SyncML will enable seamless synchronization among wireless and wireline networked data, computers, laptops, handheld computers, PDAs, mobile handsets and other mobile devices.

The SyncML Initiative is open for participation to a wide range of industries including device manufacturers, synchronization vendors, service providers and application developers. Companies interested in joining are encouraged to contact The SyncML Initiative today to become part of the team and deliver the SyncML specification available later this year. For more information on The SyncML Initiative, how to join SyncML, details of technical specifications and more, visit http://www.syncml.org

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Contact(s) information

Tara Sexton
IBM
(914) 766-3366
tara.sexton@us.ibm.com

Jennifer Weyrauch
Motorola
(847) 523-0015
jennifer.weyrauch@motorola.com

Karen Kazanjian
Lotus
(617) 693-7386
karen_kazanjian@lotus.com

Tapio Hedman
Nokia Mobile Phones
+358 10 5051
tapio.hedman@nokia.com

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