IBM Announces Wireless e-business Technology for Mobile Internet Services

Top Mobile Internet Service Providers Embrace IBM Wireless Technology

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ARMONK, NY - 30 Oct 2000: - IBM announced new products and services to help businesses go beyond simple browsing and provide real e-business applications and services for a variety of handheld devices. Today's announcement supports IBM's wireless e-business strategy to provide the IT infrastructure to link Web and enterprise applications to wireless networks.

Several service providers, including BT Cellnet, Telecom Italia, Avenir, UniXS and others today announced their support for IBM wireless e-business technology and services to provide a range of new business applications to potentially millions of wireless users.

IBM also announced it plans to offer the power and performance of its wireless e-business products through a new service that lets businesses quickly deploy mobile solutions by giving them the option to have IBM operate and manage their wireless e-business applications for them.

Industry analysts predict that the total market for wireless Internet infrastructure could exceed $100 billion by 2003, with the IT segment -- including systems, software and professional services -- accounting for nearly half.

"IBM is delivering many of these new wireless IT infrastructure services today, and generating tremendous wireless momentum in Europe," said Michel Mayer, General Manager for IBM's Pervasive Computing Division. "We plan to extend this momentum worldwide, with new servers, software and services that allow businesses to build and scale web and enterprise applications for mobile devices."

The new wireless e-business products to power next-generation services are:

WebSphere Everyplace Suite Service Provider Edition: A new breed of middleware that has been tailored to provide the functionality and scaleability wireless service providers need. It integrates the necessary functions for connecting wireless devices to Web content and commerce, including: a wireless gateway to support multiple wired and wireless networks and protocols; a transcoding server to adapt existing Web content for wireless devices; message queuing and synchronization to support online and off-line operations; personalization and subscriber management and encryption and security features.

IBM eServer p640 offers IBM's industry-leading copper chip technology in a compact, rack-mountable and rugged package designed for the carrier environment. Powered by IBM's copper-based POWER3-II microprocessors and up to 16GB of ECC SDRAM memory, the 640 achieves performance across a wide spectrum of workloads. The machine offers NEBS Level 3 compliance* -- a combination of speed and durability that is required in many e-commerce infrastructures today.

New IBM products and services will let businesses deliver real-time access to existing business applications, and a platform to develop new one optimized for mobile Devices. Employees, for example, will be able to tap into corporate intranets and other business applications -- such as internal travel or order entry systems -- anytime, anywhere.

Through these products, IBM is taking its expertise of managing complex systems with very high-volume transactions and applying it to the wireless market. For example, WebSphere Everyplace Suite can be used to register more than five million subscribers. It uses the same load balancing technology that allowed IBM to handle 11.3 billion hits to the Sydney Olympic Web site, and can scale to very large numbers of users by increasing the number of processors.

New Hosting Service for Wireless e-business

Just as with e-business, companies in the wireless space are looking for the value-added services that IBM provides in critical areas such as business and technical consulting, data management, security, recovery and hosting.

IBM is currently equipping its e-business hosting centers in the US, Europe and Asia with wireless software and hardware that let businesses extend e-business applications and services to mobile devices. IBM will continue to extend the range of its hosting services through relationships with wireless carriers.

This hosting model may be particularly beneficial for businesses in the US, which are eager to jumpstart the delivery of wireless services to Internet-enabled mobile phones, PDAs and other new network access devices. Companies can use mobile hosting capabilities to test wireless access to existing Web and enterprise applications without disrupting their internal infrastructure, or use it to quickly pilot new wireless services specifically designed for mobile devices.

This service, which will be available later this year, leverages IBM strengths as one of the mosokt experienced providers of e-business hosting services in the industry. IBM operates 175 data centers worldwide and 15 IBM e-Business Hosting Centers. To meet rising customer demand, IBM plans to open 68 more centers in the U.S. and Europe through agreements with AT&T, Diveo, Equinix, KPN Qwest, KPNQwest and Telecom Italia.

The Importance of Business Partnerships

The ultimate value of new wireless IT infrastructure for the Mobile Internet is only as good as the applications and services that run on top of it. To that end, IBM is forging relationships with major players in the wireless market -- from Web integrators, including, Razorfish and Luminant, software developers like MicroStrategy Inc., W-Trade Technologies, Inc. and River Run Software Group to device manufacturers, Palm, Symbian and Ericsson and telecommunications equipment manufactures (TEMs) Nokia and Motorola. Through these relationships, IBM is working to leverage the strength of its e-business infrastructure to bring businesses a complete range of mobile solutions.

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