Jumat, 15 Agustus 2008

IBM announced new software and services for mobile workers Friday, including applications for the iPhone and Blackberry devices. The Armonk, N.Y.-based company cited a surge in mobile devices as an important new market for traditional desktop, storage and server vendors.

IBMs internal research by its Institute for Business Value estimates that more than one billion people will be connected to the Internet this year -- a 191 percent jump from 2006. This makes mobile computing one of the fastest-growing markets in the world.


IBMs focus is on consulting and implementation services for businesses called Mobility@Work. Spokesperson Jan Walbridge said, "The program has been under wraps for six months. But with the attention to mobile-device security, new mobile devices, and considering how companies are trying to save money on energy lately, we felt it was time to announce the initiative."

Enterprises can call in the Mobility@Work team to analyze their systems, ERP and current devices, and get suggestions for a productive mobility strategy.

"Companies need to ask: Will it be productive, does it really add value to our bottom line?" Walbridge said. The Mobility@Work team then helps companies implement a final strategy and provide a post-implementation analysis measuring the return on investment.

For example, mobile workers with the right applications can work with backend systems such as real-time inventory, pricing and order placement.


Many companies are currently going mobile whether they officially approve it or not as employees are hooking in iPhones, Blackberries and Windows Mobile devices. Whether the mobility is providing a real value is a concern.

These companies need to ensure that the applications are secure and efficient. In fact, a feature at the Black Hat Security Conference was a Wall of Sheep -- the most vulnerable devices and environments on the market today -- and to no ones surprise, mobile devices are at the top of the shame list.

Add a plethora of mobile-device operating systems and interfaces, and the challenge for businesses is daunting. Walbridge said Mobility@Work includes a team of device experts whose job is not only to stay on top of mobile-device advances but work with clients to make sure the devices suit the clients needs.


IBMs solution depends on a devices ability to communicate with IBMs integration platform dubbed HATS -- Host Application Transformation Services. HATS allows developers to quickly develop custom applications for mobile devices to securely access client systems with PDAs or mobile phones.

The companys service includes the ability to tie into IBM WebSphere business monitoring software. That can provide real-time monitoring of business activities and send alert and custom data to mobile devices in real time. This software is available for Blackberry devices now, and will is expected to be available for the iPhone before the end of the year.

Additional integration software is also available for the Symbian S60 and Windows Mobile.


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