Major Players Boost Enterprise Mobility At CTIA

As the mobile world's massive annual confab got underway in Atlanta on Monday, software and hardware firms that play to the enterprise crowd made moves to bolster wireless in the

March 23, 2004

4 Min Read
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As the mobile world's massive annual confab got underway in Atlanta on Monday, software and hardware firms that play to the enterprise crowd made moves to bolster wireless in the business world.

The CTIA Wireless 2004 trade show and conference, which opened Monday and runs through Wednesday, is the wireless market's biggest event. To take advantage of the captive, albeit mobile, audience, several major players in the enterprise arena made partnership announcements, launched new products, and outlined future plans.

Qualcomm announced that it has licensed RealNetworks' RealPlayer media player, as well as its RealAudio and RealVideo codecs, and will integrate the software into two new mobile-device chip sets to put both streaming and on-demand playback multimedia content on future cellular phones.

Beginning in the second quarter, Qualcomm will add RealPlayer capabilities to its MSM6100 chip set, which is destined for CDMA200 (Code Division Multiple Access) phones, and its MSM6250 chips, targeting future phones that can use both CDMA2000 and WCDMA (Wideband CDMA), the 3G technology to which most GSM/GPRS operators are migrating. By adding its RealPlayer to the Qualcomm chip sets, Real Networks expects to boost the sales of its media-server software and content-creation tools to mobile operators and enterprises.

"Shipping RealPlayer as an integrated component of Qualcomm's chip sets means a critical mass of mobile consumers will soon have powerful handsets capable of delivering rich audio and full-motion video content services," said Ian Freed, vice president of RealNetworks' mobile products and services, in a statement.Also at CITA, Microsoft unveiled MapPoint Location Server, software that integrates with the Redmond, Wa.-based developer's MapPoint Web Service to display real-time location of mobile devices. Mobile operators who offer services based on MapPoint Location Server (MLS)--both Sprint and Bell Canada said they would roll out such services--can be used by enterprises to show the location of mobile assets, such as vehicle fleets, or to dispatch the nearest service and support personnel to a customer.

MLS can be used by enterprises and developers to integrate this location-pinpointing information into their existing business applications, said Microsoft, through the server software's ties with MapPoint Web Service, the Web-based mapping service Microsoft has long offered.

Sun Microsystems and Research in Motion (RIM), the maker of BlackBerry devices and server software, used CITA to launch a joint effort to bring Java Web services to RIM's enterprise customers. Sun said it will assist RIM in building out Web-services tools for the Java-based BlackBerry handhelds and the BlackBerry Enterprise Server, and help it integrate its offerings with Sun's own content servers.

Sun also struck a deal with AT&T Wireless that will allow the former's Java Desktop System--an integrated desktop that Sun sells to compete with Microsoft Windows, which includes the StarOffice application suite, the Mozilla browser, Evolution e-mail client, and other apps--to run on AT&T Wireless's Edge network. Scheduled to be available to customers in the fall of this year, the integration will let workers using Java Desktop in the office run it on wireless-enabled notebooks over AT&T's high-speed Edge network.

Other firms that launched products at the massive conference include PalmSource, which rolled out Mobile Mail 5.0 for the newest Palm OS handhelds, the Cobalt and Garnet. Mobile Mail 5.0 provides secure wireless e-mail connectivity between Palm-powered handhelds and enterprise mail servers. The software supports Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Domino servers on the corporate side, as well as standard POP3, IMAP, and SMTP protocols. E-mail can be pushed to the handheld from the enterprise on a schedule set by the user, and security has been enhanced through support of both SSL and over-the-air encrypted authentication.JP Mobile, a maker of enterprise middleware in the mobile market, said that it was preparing a version of its SureWave Enterprise Server that will add support for Novell's GroupWise 6.0 and 6.5 e-mail and collaboration software by next quarter. SureWave, which already supports e-mail server software from Novell's rivals--Microsoft Exchange and IBM Lotus Domino--will add GroupWise to its portfolio, letting users synchronize their in-the-office mail with that on their wireless device, as well as have their handheld's internal calendaring, do-to, and e-mail apps populated with data from GroupWise. On the device side, SureWave supports Palm OS, Microsoft's Windows Mobile, and the Symbian platform.

For its part, Intellisync pushed a new product at mobile operators. Dubbed Intellisync Mobile Suite for Wireless Operators, the software lets operators roll out synchronization services for customers using a variety of handheld or mobile phones. With support for devices running Microsoft Windows Mobile for Pocket PC and Smartphone, Palm OS, Symbian, and wireless tablet PCs and laptops--and designed to work over an array of wireless technologies, including CDMA, GSM/GPRS, EV-DO, Edge, and Wi-Fi--the suite pushes e-mail and other contact data from a user's copy of Outlook or Notes directly to the wireless device. The suite, which is currently in testing, will be generally available by the end of this month, said Intellisync.

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