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IBM Builds Momentum for Open Standards-based Wireless Infrastructure

Announces support for open enterprise architecture and solutions to help companies deploy new services across different networks and devices

CANNES, France - 17 Feb 2003: IBM today announced new solutions to help customers more efficiently deploy and support wireless services across a range of networks and devices.

The announcement continues IBM's push to establish an open standards-based infrastructure designed to reduce wireless implementation costs, speed the deployment of new services and accelerate revenue generation for enterprises and service providers.

Recognizing that most companies today are faced with a complex environment of multiple data sources, residing in multiple systems, that need to be accessible across multiple networks and devices, IBM is extending its software and services portfolio by supporting the establishment of an open and advanced enterprise reference architecture supported by customer integration labs. The reference architecture and associated solutions will help businesses dynamically extend information to disparate devices, reducing the time and costs associated with deploying new wireless applications, and extending the benefits of e-business on demand to mobile users.

"Historically, standardization has been the key driver for growth in nearly every industry on the brink of mass adoption," said Rod Adkins, general manager of IBM's pervasive computing division. "The wireless industry is following a similar evolution. Our announcements today are designed to address this evolution by providing customers with the ability to choose between a wide range of technology providers and freeing them from reliance on any single company."

Continuing the company's focus on enterprise mobility, the new IBM Wireless Enterprise Delivery Environment creates a framework for the interconnection of wireless networks and enterprise systems and details the horizontal infrastructure required to provide a common development and deployment platform that helps companies to cost-effectively and rapidly support new applications -- such as mobile sales and field force automation, e-mail access, asset monitoring, supply chain management and mobile commerce -- as well as new devices and networks. IBM plans to support the platform with the establishment of two Wireless Enterprise Labs, one in Raleigh, North Carolina, and one in LaGaude, France, that will implement the Wireless Enterprise Delivery Environment using IBM and its business partners' software and hardware components. The labs will be open to IBM business partners as a testbed to integrate components into wireless solutions based on the Wireless Enterprise Delivery Environment. Created specifically for the enterprise market, the Wireless Enterprise Delivery Environment is linked tightly with IBM's successful Service Provider Delivery Environment (SPDE)(TM), an open standards-based framework designed to give mobile and fixed network operators the flexibility to introduce new revenue generating services to their customers faster, easier and at lower cost.

In addition, new wireless solutions announced today that add to IBM's pervasive computing portfolio include:

Utilizing IBM's Wireless Enterprise Delivery Environment and WebSphere infrastructure software and the range of Nokia's business terminal platforms, IBM and Nokia will demonstrate standards-based solutions designed to give companies an effective way to mobilize their business processes and enable a wide array of reliable, scalable and secure wireless enterprise solutions, such as access to e-mail and calendar synchronization. The solutions will be demonstrated at the 3GSM World Congress this week. The companies also announced that they intend to develop and implement joint solutions across a range of Nokia business terminals, including the Nokia 6800, as well as Symbian-based devices like the Nokia 9210i Communicator and the Nokia 7650. IBM also announced that it intends to develop and deploy its WebSphere Everyplace Access client for the Symbian platform.

An agreement with Sony Ericsson to provide secure end-to-end solutions using advanced mobile handsets. The collaboration is designed to accelerate business usage of advanced mobile handsets bringing secure, reliable and scalable solutions to customers wishing to exploit the benefits of corporate mobility and increase productivity in mobile work environments, such as field and sales force applications.

An end-to-end middleware solution with Wavecom that offers enterprise users and network operators a simple, rapid and more efficient connection between different machines across the I/T ecosystem. The new standards-based solution embeds IBM's MQIsdp messaging protocol directly onto the Wavecom Wireless Module helping data coming from handsets and other devices to be transformed to match the data requirements of other enterprise mobile applications. These wireless modules can then be integrated into a wide range of devices, whether vending machines, electricity meters or industrial appliances. Customers can realize a greater return on their IT investment from a solution that is designed to enable machines to rapidly network with applications at the application level without requiring extensive reprogramming or systems administration.

An end-to-end solution based on Alcatel's GPRS, WLAN and ADSL access solutions, running on IBM WebSphere and Lotus software, which will provide mobile workers in enterprises access to back end applications from their laptops or PDAs over multiple networks with seamless services continuity. This capability will be demonstrated at 3GSM at Alcatel's booth. Connecting with IBM's Wireless Enterprise Lab in La Gaude, Alcatel's 3G Reality Centres, a worldwide program launched by Alcatel, integrate key players along the entire mobile value chain to foster timely availability and interoperability of mobile multimedia services, accelerating the development of a mobile centric ecosystem.

Collaboration with SFR to provide enterprises with a wireless e-business solution combining SFR's GPRS data offering and IBM's WebSphere Everyplace Connection Manager to provide seamless cross-network roaming that allows mobile users to switch between a wired network and GPRS without having to restart applications. The solution provides industry-leading security, data flow optimization, and improved session stability over wired and wireless networks.

Collaboration with isMobile, an IBM business partner providing a mobile field force automation application suite based on IBM middleware and servers, and Midray, a Debitel company in the Swisscom Group which provides mobile services to the business market over networks from a number of mobile network providers, including Vodafone and T-Mobile. The isMobile Bla Coordinator suite enables companies with mobile workforces to increase their service efficiency and to reduce their work order cost. Initially aimed at the German market, the Midray service is planned to also become available in other European countries.

The availability of IBM's Lotus Domino Everyplace Access Server and Lotus Sametime Everyplace on Palm's newly announced PalmTungsten(TM) W handheld. With carrier activation, the data-centric Tungsten W handheld provides users with a sophisticated combination of wireless email, SMS messaging, Internet browsing, phone functionality, and business applications on GSM(TM)/GPRS networks. IBM's WebSphere Everyplace Access will also soon be available as a mobile client on Palm handhelds, enabling customers to manage and extend back-end systems, applications and data to deliver enterprise solutions to mobile users.

IBM also made several announcements for the service provider market leveraging components of the IBM Service Provider Delivery Environment, including:

Extensions to the existing IBM Rapid IP Services for e-business Solution (WebSphere Everyplace Subscription Manager, WebSphere Business Integration for Telecommunications, DB2 and WebSphere Portal) to address service provider needs in delivering public wireless LANs. These extensions will provide authentication and management integration with access controllers and pre-paid options like credit cards, vouchers and scratch card support with business partners. WebSphere Everyplace Subscription Manager is highly scalable and capable of supporting access for millions of subscribers. By leveraging this solution with WebSphere Connection Manager, subscribers can roam between wireline (ie, ethernet, DSL) connections, public wireless LAN hot spots and existing public wireless connections (i.e., 3g, GPRS, GSM) without losing the existing session. Self care is an important component of this solution, helping service providers reduce operational expense and increasing efficiency.

The first integrated WAP 2 platform based on Openwave's Mobile Access Gateway 6 and core IBM middleware. By combining WebSphere Application Server, WebSphere Portal, DB2 database software, pSeries e-Servers and storage, operators have the ability to drive lower costs and faster product cycle times. The two companies are also demonstrating joint solutions for downloading mobile content and generating multi-channel, permission-based campaigns. Customers will now be able to rapidly automate their wireless marketing programs, branded through third parties, personalized by segment and optimized for various handsets.

The launch of an on demand wireless e-business solution with Smartner that runs on IBM WebSphere Everyplace middleware and IBM servers, enabling wireless service providers and their customers to reduce the total cost of ownership for mobile office solutions by benefiting from simple, rapid deployment, highly scalable and cost-effective mobile access of their e-mail servers from a variety of devices like mobile phones, PDAs, and laptops. The server portion of Smartner Office Extender, which supports mobile access to Lotus Domino, Microsoft Exchange and POP3 mail servers, can be hosted by service providers, or in an IBM e-business Hosting Center on behalf of the service provider. A range of IBM services are available to support the deployment of Smartner Office Extender. The solution has already been deployed by a number of European wireless service providers, including Vodafone Ireland.

A solution to be developed with InfoSpace that targets the mobile professional by unifying general and vertical industry information services, navigation and other location based services, and availability management services, including email, personal information management, alerting and notification, and instant messaging, into a single offering that delivers these capabilities to mobile phones. The solution will include InfoSpace's managed service offering for mobile push-messaging, Websphere Portal running at the wireless carrier and Websphere Everyplace Access running at the enterprise behind its firewall interfacing to Lotus Notes or other enterprise information systems. The integration, flexibility and security built into this offering, combined with its availability on mobile phones and instant alerting capability via push-messaging standards, will create a powerful entry with significant advantages over niche offerings that have been available only on PDAs. This offering allows wireless service providers to sell new value added data services to enterprise customers which is a top business imperative as they look to drive revenue.

In support of WebSphere Telecom Application Server, IBM has established the Developer Center for Telecom and e-business, where IBM Business Partners can leverage IBM technical expertise and development facilities, test applications in a network environment before releasing them, and explore new channels for products. This opportunity is available exclusively to members of PartnerWorld for Developers, the developer resource for IBM Business Partners. And to support the growing number of opportunities for Parlay in Europe, the Developer Center for Telecom and e-business will be also be extended to the IBM Mobile Solutions Lab in Helsinki, Finland. In addition, a Rapid Porting team has been established to accelerate application ports to WebSphere Telecom Application Server.

The new solutions announced today add to a portfolio that includes software that extends IBM's popular WebSphere platform to smart machines, wireless devices and networks, and solutions that enable enterprises to deploy applications and data to mobile workforces. The company has built a services force of 10,000 wireless consultants, and in June 2002 was highlighted by International Data Corporation as "by far the leading provider of mobile and wireless professional services." Through an innovative wireless ROI tool based on thousands of customer engagements, the company is helping customers achieve higher productivity from the deployment of wireless solutions. The announcements also build on IBM's continued momentum of aligning with strategic industry players across the pervasive computing ecosystem. Through its pervasive computing division, IBM provides the flexibility for the on demand era, extending the infrastructure to new devices and new forms of interaction.

Contact(s) information

Mike Maney
IBM Media Relations
914-766-3366
mmaney@us.ibm.com

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Information Management, Lotus, Tivoli, Rational, WebSphere, Open standards, open source