IBM Ships Lotus Sametime 7.5, Delivering the First Unified Platform for Business Collaboration

Nearly 100 IBM Business Partners Working on Lotus Sametime Solutions

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NEW YORK, NY - 13 Sep 2006: Along with significant industry support from leading business partners, IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the availability of Lotus Sametime 7.5 software, which enables businesses to extend their real-time collaboration beyond instant messaging and Web conferencing to a platform for unified business collaboration. The IBM approach to unified collaboration integrates an enterprise's key communication tools into their business processes, helping users collaborate faster and smarter to increase productivity.

As instant messaging evolves from a person-to-person communication tool to the collaboration hub of an organization, the demand for secure, flexible and customizable solutions increases. The ability to "plug in" new functionality into instant messaging means a customer could tap into voice, video and access data from other applications all within the Lotus Sametime client to speed productivity and work more efficiently.

"Lotus Sametime 7.5 is the first product to deliver a unified collaboration platform that includes instant messaging, Web conferencing and voice capabilities," said Michael Rhodin, general manager, IBM Lotus Software. "Today, customers can take advantage of a unified approach to communications that can be easily extended based on open standards -- not proprietary code -- putting customers in control of their collaborative environment."

The evolution of instant messaging to a more open and extensible platform also represents a significant opportunity for the IBM Business Partner community. With its open and flexible Eclipse framework, Lotus Sametime 7.5 enables customers and third-party vendors to rapidly build and deploy plugins. Incorporating Web 2.0 technologies will enable customers to create new solutions such as mashups, effectively bringing leading capabilities from consumer focused applications to enterprises.

Nearly 100 IBM Business Partners from around the world are working with IBM to deliver solutions for Lotus Sametime. Today, more than 30 solutions are being highlighted in the IBM Virtual Partner Showcase for Lotus Sametime and at "Real-Time. Right Now," a customer and IBM Business Partner event in New York City. The following plugins are being demonstrated during the event keynote session:

To make it easier for customers to take advantage of the Lotus Sametime plugin model, IBM is today announcing an online virtual showcase of IBM Business Partner and IBM created plugins. With this resource, customers will be able to easily search and learn about available third-party technology that integrates with Lotus Sametime. In addition, customers will have direct links to the IBM Business Partners and be able to download their plugins.

Lotus Sametime 7.5 is currently available at a cost of $55.00 per user for a perpetual software license.

For more information on Lotus Sametime: www.ibm.com/lotus/sametime. For the IBM Virtual Partner Showcase for Lotus Sametime: http://www-306.ibm.com/software/lotus/partnershowcase/sametime/

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