Trigenix, the mobile interface company, today announce that jointly with T-Mobile they have expanded the Screen Styles content portfolio to more than 350 Screen Styles. Latest themes include The Gunners, Anastacia and Euro 2004, supporting T-Mobile's position as an official partner for UEFA EURO 2004, in readiness for the football championships this summer.

Launched in T-Mobile's five European markets in October 2003, Screen Styles are device interfaces allowing customers easy and personalised access to their favourite local content channels within t-zones, T-Mobile's mobile multimedia services. Each Screen Styles product offering comprises a bundle of personalised elements including a wallpaper, polyphonic ringtone, themed menu, and links to additional relevant content around the chosen theme.

Additionally, Screen Styles can now be deployed across a broader range of devices, as there is platform support for all Series 60 and MIDP 2.0 Java phones. Visitors to the t-zones area of the T-Mobile stand at CeBIT will be able to view a unique showcase running Screen Styles on a range of handsets including the Nokia 6600/N-Gage, Siemens SX1 and Motorola V300. During 2004, Screen Styles will be available on a wide range of the very latest T-Mobile handsets delivering an unrivalled and market-leading combination of content and device coverage.

The latest enhancement in the footprint of the Trigenix T4 technology will allow a deeper and more enriched variety of Screen Styles. These include in particular enhanced feature menus, links to the t-zones portal, a news-feed ticker, and dynamic links to other information such as promotions or daily updates. All of these enhancements will undoubtedly make Screen Styles personalisation a more entertaining and compelling experience for T-Mobile subscribers.

Speaking before the show Steve Ives, CEO of Trigenix commented "The desire for personalisation extends across the majority of mobile users and T-Mobile's simultaneous availability of many more Screen Styles coupled with Trigenix's T4 availability on many more handset types, will meet the needs of this majority."

Screen Styles are available to download from the T-Mobile t-zones multimedia portal and websites in the UK, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and Czech Republic.

Giving wireless freedom for voice PC communication

Plantronics Inc., the world leader in communications headsets, and TDK Systems, manufacturer of award-winning Bluetooth adaptors and software for PC's and Apple computers, today announced a partnership to enhance the end-user experience for PC-based Bluetooth enabled voice communications.

Today, thousands of users are adding Bluetooth wireless technology to their home and business computers to take advantage of developing applications available between PCs and wireless peripherals such as mobile phones, headsets, printers, keyboards and pointing devices.

Voice communication via PCs is a rapid growth area with VoIP applications increasing as more consumers and businesses take advantage of its convenience, quality, productivity increases and cost efficiencies. By 2009, VoIP could account for 40 percent of the consumer telephone market and on the enterprise side, the Synergy Research Group estimates that sales of Internet-enabled phone systems to businesses will grow to reach US$5.3 billion in 2007.

TDK Systems, a major player in mobile connectivity and Plantronics are delighted to combine forces to take Bluetooth PC audio communications to the next level of integration and increased quality. "Communication needs are rapidly evolving. The PC has shown its potential in business, multimedia and internet/data communications. With the increase in adoption of VoIP for businesses and consumers there is a real need for Bluetooth solutions to enhance the PC providing the freedom to talk wirelessly via the PC over the internet." Comments Philip Vanhoutte Plantronics EMEA MD, he continues "TDK Systems' track record makes them the ideal partner to optimize the user's PC Voice experience and will undoubtly increase the uptake of this technology and popularity of Voice over IP".

Plantronics' expertise in developing lightweight headsets that enhance personal communications and deliver crystal clear audio performance spans over 40 years and they bring an award winning portfolio of Bluetooth headsets to the partnership.

TDK Systems' easy to use Bluetooth adaptors allow users to quickly take advantage of new applications powered by their computer. All TDK Systems' adaptors support Bluetooth's audio functions and make them easy to set-up and operate. By utilising a Bluetooth headset with their PC users can exploit low-cost PC based telephony and VoIP services.

"Unlike other Bluetooth developers who concentrate only on data, TDK Systems has concentrated on incorporating robust audio support into all its products," said Nick Hunn, Managing Director at TDK Systems. "That uniquely positions us to serve this new tranche of VoIP applications which Skype is bringing to the mass market."

"The recent legislation across Europe concerning use of mobile phones whilst driving has seen millions of users purchasing headsets. By combining these with TDK Systems' Bluetooth adaptors that same investment can save pounds in telephone bills. For the business traveller, the cost of enabling Bluetooth VoIP telephony can pay back within half an hour. Those who have already tried VoIP will welcome the mobility that Bluetooth headsets provide."

Forum will drive industry-uptake of intuitive NFC technology that enables touch-based interaction with electronic devices


Nokia Corporation, Royal Philips Electronics and Sony Corporation have established the Near Field Communication (NFC) Forum to enable the use of touch-based interactions in consumer electronics, mobile devices, PCs, smart objects and for payment purposes. Touch-based interactions will allow users to access content and services in an intuitive way by touching smart objects and connecting devices just by holding them next to each other. The new forum will promote implementation and standardization of NFC technology to ensure interoperability between devices and services.

Consumers are seeking easier ways to interact with their immediate environment and to enable easy communication between their electronic devices and gain access to services. The vision of the NFC Forum is to enable users to access content and services in an intuitive way. To bring this vision to life, Nokia, Philips and Sony invite other leading companies from mobile communications, consumer electronics, chip manufacturing, computing, media and entertainment, telecom and payment services to join the NFC Forum.

"At Philips our focus is giving consumers easy access to information, entertainment and services - NFC does just that," said Scott McGregor, President and Chief Executive Officer, Philips Semiconductors. "Enabling easy transfer of information between consumer devices from phone numbers to electronic transactions, NFC bridges today's connectivity gap and allows 'connected consumers' to interact with their environment. By pushing the technology with the backing of an industry organization such as the NFC Forum, NFC will soon open up a range of new opportunities for the consumer."

"Nokia sees touch-based interactions, enabled by Near Field Communication technology, as an elegant way of bringing Nokia's Life goes Mobile vision into reality," said Pertti Korhonen Chief-Technology Officer, Senior Vice President, Nokia. "Touch is an intuitive and easy way to connect, collect and share with mobile devices. It will not only enhance the experience of using current services but also create entirely new applications and value. Nokia is looking forward to working with the other members to bring this exciting new user experience to the mobile world."

"Sony positions NFC as a new form of user interface technology for consumer electronics products, and will strongly promote integration of NFC into numerous products across a wide variety of industries," said Teruaki Aoki, Senior Executive Vice President, Sony Corporation. "The use of NFC technology in consumer electronics devices will increase opportunities for users to transfer data, implement secure transactions and download rich content.  We have high expectations that this will significantly enhance the convenience and enjoyability of products and services. The activities of the NFC Forum will be to focus on ensuring interoperability among various devices which will be crucial for high acceptance of NFC technology, and Sony will proactively participate in these efforts."

Motorola, a global leader in wireless and automotive communications, has announced the launch of the Motorola M900 GSM Fixed Mobile Car Phone.

Following the success of the Spirit CDMA fixed mobile car phone, Motorola designed the Motorola M900 to make GSM voice and data communications more convenient within a dedicated vehicle environment. The Motorola M900’s voice activation key is a distinguishing feature of the phone, which enables the use of spoken commands to activate phone functions. This supports voice dialing, not only using voice tags linked to entries in the phone book, but also through voice recognition to dial numbers directly  in 6 languages – English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Hebrew.

The design of the Motorola M900 was tailored to enhance the user experience in the vehicle environment. With its enhanced illuminated graphic display, large characters and adjustable blue backlight contrast setting, the user is provided with a convenient way to communicate on the move.

Naturally the Motorola M900 provides excellent voice quality in a hands-free environment, using advanced algorithms incorporating echo cancellation and noise suppression.
 
The Motorola M900 will be demonstrated at Motorola’s stand E40 and E60, Hall 26 at CeBIT, March 18th – 24th.

Hutchison Whampoa Limited today issued their full year results in Hong Kong. As part of these results the company released updated trading information on 3 UK and 3 markets globally.

The Highlights for 3 UK are:
• 3 has added 151,000 customers since December 12 2003, giving a total customer base of 361,000
• 3 has maintained its high ARPU, which now stands at £45
• ThreePay, its pay-as-you-go offer, has been well received by retailers and consumers since its launch
• 3 has significantly increased its handset portfolio with the launch of the NEC e313, NEC e616 and Motorola A925
• 3 in the UK now has over 75% population coverage for video mobile services and 99% for voice and text
• A focus on customer service and network optimisation has seen significant improvements in customer care and network reliability
• 3 products and services are now available in over 3,200 shops across the UK

The 3 group of companies also announced the following today:
3 now has 1,038,000 customers globally
3 Italy has 453,000 customers
3 Hong Kong has 36,500 customers

Siemens launches "outdoor" phone

At CeBIT, Siemens Information and Communication Mobile (Siemens mobile) launches the M65, a strikingly designed solid outdoor Triband GSM handset, packed with full multimedia features for optimum performance and entertainment. Combining a unique mix of rubber and metal, the Siemens M65 offers improved resistance to water splashes, shock and dust as well as a complete range of multimedia features. It also includes an integrated VGA video and photo camera, a large high-resolution and 64k TFT color display, and the full MMS functionality.

The Siemens M65 pushes outdoor communications to new limits, fusing the latest technology with a unique rugged design. Multimedia features such as image and video messaging, the inbuilt VGA digital camera, and the large 2.1 inch diagonal,132 x 176 pixel, 64 k TFT color display allow users to record adventurous moments and share these with friends and family quickly and easily. In low-light conditions the attachable flash lets experiences be captured around the clock. Special effects of the photo editor can be added to images for an extra twist or touch of drama.

Entertainment is also high on the feature list of the Siemens M65 with Java and games such as Turrican, Team Point Blank and Stack Attack Advanced. Outdoor related images and animation - nature or sports themes for example - allow users to personalize the interface. To add an individual touch or to fit their moods users can download polyphonic sounds (40-note polyphony). Instant messaging is also incorporated for sharing news and adventures in real time with friends everywhere.
Rudi Lamprecht, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and President of the Board of Siemens mobile, said: "The M65 is all about experience but also optimum performance and progressive design. I believe it stands out from competitors in this segment because it not only offers superior outdoor functionality but also the latest multimedia features, in a very unique and high quality design.”

Combining a robust mobile holder and advanced cyclometer with additional tour-management functions and navigational elements, the optional Bike-o-Meter is the perfect M65 bike companion. Simply mounted in direct view on the bike’s handlebar, it displays not only information on standard cyclometer functions but it gives you the option to record new tours on the move or to follow predefined trips that are indicated on the phone’s display.

With a 750-mAh lithium-ion battery supplied as standard, the phone offers 300 hours of standby time and 5, 5 hours of talk time. A wide range of Siemens Original Accessories is available: besides the innovative Bike-o-Meter it includes an attachable flash with red eye reduction, a variety of in-car solutions like the flexible "plug&play" Car Kit Easy with an exchangeable mobile holder, or the high quality Car Kit Comfort as well as various headsets, chargers and data cables, an extra battery and practical carrying cases.
The Siemens M65 will be available across Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific and Brazil in the second quarter 2004 in the color "Cool Gray". The price will be available locally.

External Links

Siemens

Today at CeBIT 2004, Siemens Information and Communication Mobile (Siemens mobile) launches the high performance S65 business class mobile phone.

The first Siemens handset with a 1.3 MegaPix integrated video camera, the triband S65 offers a full suite of business software, a 65k high-resolution color display and 32MB of memory. A premium silver finish and elegant, understated design completes a phone which offers performance and style for executives who expect the best.

The S65’s high quality 1.3 MegaPix integrated camera and 4 step digital zoom ensure users can record video clips and pictures in detail. The video recorder films at 15 frames per second to offer seamless playback. A large 132x176 pixel and 65k TFT color screen displays images vividly so captured moments can be played back to colleagues, friends and family with impact and precision. The attachable flash offers flexibility to the consumer and makes this a handset as much for the office party as off site meetings. As the S65 is triband, messages and experiences can be communicated back to the home or office from almost anywhere in the world.

In addition to the handset’s creative features, the S65 boasts a full suite of business software to offer busy professionals a tiny, truly mobile office. Bluetooth, wireless synchronisation with Microsoft Outlook, Lotus Notes and extended PIM (personal information management) mean it’s easy to manage the inbox out of the office. And in combination with the innovative Car Kit Bluetooth with external display, it offers convenient wireless communication whilst in the car.

Thanks to a compact exchangeable Memory Card of a big 32MB of additional data files and presentations can be stored and shared with colleagues. After work, this flexible memory can be swapped to store more files, pictures and video clips on the S65 to let users maximise their ‘down time’. The options are endless and this despite being only 98g, 109 x 45 x18 mm, Siemens S65 is a powerful device that achieves the best balance between creativity and business.

Following on from the award winning S55, the S65 is poised to become Siemens mobile’s newest design classic. This stylish handset has been crafted in premium-galvanised materials with a high quality silver finish to produce an understated but striking mobile phone that signifies quality and will be desired the world over. And the new lightweight Headset PTT Bluetooth with its compact and neat design is the perfect companion for wireless communication with this phone.

Rudi Lamprecht, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and President of the Board of Siemens mobile, comments: "The most successful business people are often the most demanding. Siemens S65 is a sophisticated mobile phone that delivers maximum performance, yet achieves an understated and classy look and feel. I believe that by combining Siemens’ technical expertise with striking design, we’ve created a handset that the industry will acknowledge as a new approach to business class handset and which stands out in its class."

The S65 has 6 hours talk time and up to 250 hours standby time. In addition, a wide range of Siemens Original Accessories complement the S65 like the attachable Flash and a variety of Headsets such as the light and small Headset PTT BluetoothTM, the elaborate designed silver and black coloured Headset Purestyle or the Headset PTT. Moreover there is a broad choice of in-car solutions, like the innovative high quality Car Kit Bluetooth with external display, that remote controls the S65, the fixed installed Car Kit Comfort or the flexible Car Kit Easy with its exchangeable mobile holder for future compatibility. Various chargers and data cables, an extra battery and practical carrying cases are also available.

External Links

Siemens

Claiming the first fully compatible, video-enabled i-mode device to launch in Europe

NEC is extending its portfolio of i-mode handsets in Europe with the launch of the n400i – the first fully compatible i-mode device in Europe to enable users to shoot and send video clips. The n400i will be supplied to KPN Mobile in the Netherlands, E-Plus in Germany and BASE in Belgium, and can be seen on the NEC and E-Plus booths at this year’s CeBIT show in Hannover.

NEC has a formidable global pedigree in i-mode. In Europe, NEC launched the first ever i-mode handset to be developed specifically for the European market, the n21i, which was supplied for the launch of KPN Mobile’s i-mode service in March 2002. NEC also provides i-mode devices to Bouygues Telecom in France, Telefonica in Spain, and is the largest
i-modeTM handset manufacturer in Japan.
 
The n400i’s elegantly stylish silver clamshell exterior houses a highly advanced and innovative mobile device, with all the latest must-have features. It includes an integrated MPEG4 video and still camera with nightlight, so that users can make their own movie or still images even in dark conditions. In fact, the LED nightlight is so effective that it can double as a torch.
 
The camera also features a 3x digital zoom and self-timer function, and can take pictures in seven formats to maximise image quality in different light levels: standard full colour, sepia, monochrome, negative, darkness, person and room. Users can then opt to save the image in one of five quality standards – ranging from super fine to super economy. Clips can be sent to other i-mode users via i-mail, other mobile users via MMS, or e-mailed to a PC anywhere in the world.
 
The handset boasts two 65,536 colour screens – a large 240x320 pixel screen on the inside, and a smaller external 108x80 pixel screen. It has been designed to showcase all of the features and functions offered by  i-modeTM in Europe, including e-mail, internet browsing, and the latest JAVATM games – more than enough to keep even the most demanding users entertained on the move.
 
The external screen can be used to personalise the device with a wallpaper or incoming caller ID image. And with 64-chord polyphonic sound, users can download the latest ringtones and assign them to their favourite contacts.
 
Frequent travellers will be glad to see that the n400i is tri-band, allowing them to stay in touch across five continents. It also features 4Mb of internal memory, a 500 contact phonebook, calendar, to do list, clock and alarm, calculator, currency converter and scratch pad.
 
“NEC is committed to the continued success of i-mode in Europe, and is delighted to be, once again, bringing new innovation to the market,” said Tony Hutson, Director, NEC UK. “The n400i is sleek and stylish, yet packed with cutting edge mobile technology that has been developed exclusively by NEC in Japan. It is certain to impress i-mode’s rapidly growing European user base.”
 
The n400i will go on sale in The Netherlands, Germany and Belgium this spring.

External Links

NEC

Operator sers embedded on the SIM at purchase or O-T-A.

NEC Corporation today announced the launch of its AppliChoice solution at CeBIT 2004. With this solution, NEC has enabled new business models for mobile value-added services in Europe and other regions. AppliChoice realises the full potential of the Mobile Internet business model through retail kiosks that embed operator branded service portals into the mobile subscriber’s handset on purchase or at any time after. It is available now for GPRS and W-CDMA mobile network operators offering Mobile Internet services.

Designed to personalise the mobile phone menu in the way the user finds best, AppliChoice leads users to content of their choice at the click of a button. After purchase, users insert their SIM card into an AppliChoice Kiosk and then select which services they prefer from the options presented on the touch panel. Using the AppliChoice panel is straightforward with clear instructions at each stage. It is possible to purchase service packages or individual a la carte services, or a combination of the two, to provide an instant, customized service menu for subscribers. The SIM menu software can be used in any make of mobile phone bringing operator content and branding into everyday mobile handsets. AppliChoice Kiosks are compact and reliable, meaning they can be deployed for use in close proximity to wherever handsets are sold. Existing mobile subscribers can have the AppliChoice menu software sent to their handset over their cellular network. Kiosks can be deployed wherever mobile network operators wish to market mobile content services or provide automated Customer Service facilities.
 
The advantage of the system for the user is the direct access to pre-determined content which they have chosen without the current difficulties of browsing complex menu lists, resulting in them selecting only a few easy-to-reach services. In simplifying this process and making content more immediately available. AppliChoice enables the user to reach for more of the services they value. This selection can be amended remotely at any time via the Internet or by simply using an AppliChoice Kiosk and reprogramming the SIM. Direct links to news, sports, shopping and restaurant information, transport schedules and traffic condition update sites can all be preset according to subscribers’ needs. This means that instead of browsing through a vast amount of information, preferred links are immediately accessible and information can be assimilated rapidly and efficiently. Fresh updates or new services can be brought to the subscribers’ attention very easily, allowing them to modify their service selection and enhance revenue for content providers and operators.
 
For mobile operators this solution addresses several issues; how to provide content and get the best out of a relationship with content providers, organizing subscriber service categories, offers a strategy for marketing content services through hundreds of mobile phone shops and helps branding deeper into the handset at low cost. Content is deployed via an operator portal which AppliChoice creates, allowing subscribers to choose what they want and permitting operators to gather subscriber’s user information. Content is accessed via operators’ portals on GPRS or W-CDMA networks. A portal server automatically generates a customized portal for every subscriber while the central server resolves subscriber management, content and point of sale management issues, in addition to managing information on users portals. System information and updates, deletion and changes can be monitored by this solution and content duly distributed. AppliChoice brings mobile operators better information on subscribers’ preferences, richer content availability, more subscribers and therefore more revenue. Via the portal, the operator’s brand is delivered to the handset in a way that is not currently possible without bespoke handset customisation. Better services are realised on simpler phones and subscription rates for services are enhanced in tandem with phone and SIM purchases. There is the added bonus of operators being able to exert influence over mobile phone shops to favour their services over a rival, affording competitive advantage in the marketplace. For shops, AppliChoice will increase footfall through their doors and increase back margins from the operator.

External Links

NEC at Cebit

New Linksys Wireless-G Products with SpeedBooster provide enhanced performance by up to 35% and compatibility with other 802.11b/g Products

Linksys, a division of Cisco Systems, and the leading global manufacturer of broadband, wireless, and networking hardware for home and SOHO (Small Office/Home Office)
environments, today announced a new line of next generation 802.11g products - Wireless-G with SpeedBooster. These new products provide home and small office users with more wireless throughput and enhance network performance by up to 35%.

Designed to be backwards compatible with the existing installed base of 802.11b/g products, they include additional security options and the industry’s most advanced parental
control service to further protect computers and users on the network. In addition, users can see a significant performance enhancement when these products are used in mixed-wireless networks using standard 802.11g products. The SpeedBooster line includes a Wireless-G Router (WRT54GS), PC Card (WPC54GS) and PCI Adapter (WMP54GS).

"Our customers worldwide want more performance but they also want currently installed products and future wireless products added to the network to work well together.
It is highly likely that users will have a mixed network of Linksys clients, game or media adapters, and also laptops with embedded wireless clients like Intel’s Centrino", said Steve Troyer, Linksys’ director of product marketing. "Our SpeedBooster products can provide the fastest wireless
throughput in real-world environments without negative impact on the performance of nearby wireless systems."

SpeedBooster features

 Real-World Wireless Network Performance Enhanced by Up To 35%* when using
SpeedBooster products
· Designed for Complete Interoperability and Significantly Enhanced
Performance with all Standard-Compliant 802.11g Products
· Designed for Complete Interoperability with all Standard-Compliant 802.11b
Products·
‘Good Neighbour’--Designed to Limit Interference to other nearby Wireless Networks

Wireless-G Router with SpeedBooster Provides Additional Value with More Security Features such as the new Linksys industry leading Parental Control

Service, WPA, SPI Firewall and 802.1x Authentication and Authorisation

Increases Real-World Performance By Up To 35%*

SpeedBooster, built on Broadcom’s Afterburner technology, is desiged to help increase "real world" wireless network throughput performance by up to 35%.
SpeedBooster can also increase the aggregate throughput performance of a mixed wireless network of 802.11b/g by up to 70%.  This means that no matter what wireless device is running, the overall performance of a network is enhanced.  SpeedBooster products minimise overhead communication between data transmissions which enable the boost in performance.

Unlike other proprietary speed-enhanced products, a SpeedBooster router is designed to associate with standards-compliant 802.11b/g products on the
network and conform to the speed of that device. SpeedBooster adapters communicating with the SpeedBooster router will continue to perform at enhanced speeds whilst
802.11b or 802.11g products, including Centrino equipped notebooks, will gracefully downshift to their designed data throughput.

Interoperability with all Standard-Compliant 802.11b/g Products

SpeedBooster is the first speed-enhanced technology designed to offer complete 802.11 compliancy with products that are fully standards-compliant. The SpeedBooster product line is currently the only speed-enhanced 802.11g products that are compatible and interoperable with other vendors’ 802.11b and 802.11g compliant products.

Designed to limit interference

The IEEE specification for certified 802.11g products require that the products stay within 20MHz (on Channel 6) of the 2.4GHz frequency band.
Adhering to this specification limits interference with devices and other networks in the 2.4 GHz band. Since Linksys SpeedBooster products conform to this 802.11g specification, they are expected to be the first speed-enhanced technology products in selected countries worldwide starting in May.  Several countries currently restrict the usage of wireless products that exceed the 20MHz rule.

Troyer said, "It is our commitment to continue providing additional value to our products and services.  In addition to all the award-winning features found in our standard Wireless-G products, we are also offering additional security features to our Wireless-G SpeedBooster Router.  Linksys offers as many security options as possible to give customers the choice if they require them."

Security features

The Linksys Wireless-G Broadband Router with SpeedBooster includes new features that enhance not only the performance of the home network but the security levels as well.   Besides the SPI (stateful packet inspection ) firewall, Linksys has added WPA (currently being tested for certification) which offers improved encryption security beyond standard WEP. SpeedBooster also includes the IEEE security protocol 802.1x which uses a handshake protocol to pass data to authentication servers such as RADIUS.

Linksys is also announcing its new Parental Control Service, designed and developed with Netopia, Inc., which makes it easy for users to keep their family safe on the Internet.  Users can set individual profiles for time of day and day of week access restrictions for all major internet applications including browsers, email, chat, and Instant Messaging.  Through the 16
different web content categories, users can control website access for each member of the family. Web site filtering based on millions of URL classifications within over 50 separate categories including, pornography or violence, for example, which are updated on a daily basis by an independent rating service. The email and Instant messaging filters let users decide who in their family can send and receive messages. Online reports for the family network are viewable at any time.  The Parental Control Service will be available early Summer.

Pricing and availability

The SpeedBooster line is scheduled to be available starting in May through major retail, online resellers, distribution, direct mail resellers, and VARs.
Wireless-G Broadband Router with SpeedBooster (WRT54GS)
Wireless-G Notebook Adapter with SpeedBooster (WPC54GS)
Wireless-G PCI Adapter with SpeedBooster (WMP54GS)

External Links

Linksys

The TeleManagement Forum (TM Forum) announced today the release of New Generation Operations Systems and Software (NGOSS) Release 4.0. The new version of NGOSS introduces for the first time the "NGOSS Lifecycle" methodology that defines how to use the NGOSS framework to implement NGOSS-based OSS/BSS solutions. 

In addition, Release 4.0 contains enhancements to the eTOM, SID, and architecture tools.
NGOSS is the TM Forum's comprehensive, integrated framework for analysing, designing, developing, procuring and deploying operational and business support systems and software in a standardised, easy to integrate, and easy
to operate fashion.

"The purpose of Release 4.0 is to better equip service  providers with 'how to' tools for adopting and implementing NGOSS," says Martin Creaner, CTO of the TM Forum. "This significant move forward is a key contribution to the TM
Forum's 2004 strategy to better educate service providers on how to use NGOSS to transition to a 'lean operations' model."

The most significant enhancement to version 4.0 is the addition of the Lifecycle Management methodology which is a series of documents designed to help service providers develop OSS/BSS solutions for business problems using NGOSS principles. The Lifecycle Methodology defines a "cradle to grave" strategy for process definition, system design, solution implementation, and solution deployment by weaving together the detailed eTOM, SID, and architecture tools that exist in the NGOSS toolkit today.

"The NGOSS Lifecycle Methodology combines software engineering best practices with the NGOSS knowledge base to ensure that OSS/BSS systems meet the corporate business objectives," said Jenny Huang, OSS Architect and Standards Strategist at AT&T Labs. "The methodology blends the existing
software engineering best practices with real-world business experience from  major service providers and software vendors, to become a tailored methodology for the telecommunications industry."
 
In addition to the NGOSS Lifecycle Methodology, other version 4.0 enhancements also focus on increasing the usability of NGOSS.  These include:

eTOM:  Extension and deepening of eTOM business process map and example process flows

SID: SID Primer document providing a simple overview of the information models; extensions to information/data model definitions; users guide for the SID UML models

Architecture Enhancements: Detailed definition of a "Contract", which is the fundamental unit of interoperability within an NGOSS solution

Compliance:  Extension of tests to include new SID content; definition of strategy for testing for more detailed eTOM compliance.

External Links

TM Forum NGOSS 4.0 documents

ComArch takes telecommunications forward with OSS & BSS solutions supporting the technology of the future EDGE and UMTS and expands the possibilities of implementing new types of services for customers and gives new wide business opportunities for telecom operators and content providers. ComArch TYTAN Billing Platform and InsightNet Network Management Platform enable information and communication service providers to deploy, then effectively use 3G networks, and allow for the extension of their current functionalities within 2.5G networks.

The accounting of new type of UMTS services requires open and flexible billing systems to handle huge amount of data, new complex types of services and multiple service and content providers. The fully integrated TYTAN Billing Platform enables operators rapidly to develop new revenue streams, handle new services and share the revenue with the whole chain of service providers. Its real-time capability allows full prepaid and postpaid convergence.

TYTAN Data Processing Server (DPS), as the kernel of the platform, is a very efficient rules-based rating engine, that has been benchmarked on major hardware platforms to process the volume of data that UMTS will generate. TYTAN InterPartner Billing component uses the DPS to respond to the new market requirements  i.e. quick  implementation and configuration of various revenue sharing scenarios.

"Our OSS & BSS systems are specifically designed to handle the complexity and huge volumes of data connected with the next generation networks and services. They enable fast introduction of new services to the market giving the competitive advantage for the carriers and content providers and taking out the real business value out of new technologies" – says Christophe Debou, ComArch Board Member, Business Telecommunications Unit.

ComArch InsightNet Service Management gives the operators an innovative tool for managing UMTS networks and monitoring QoS for current and new UMTS services. Continuity and quality of the offered services has essential value in the context of the revenues of the carrier. Monitoring of the network as well as services and early detection of the potential problems allows the carrier to take measures aiming at minimalising the loss of revenue.

Another key component in InsightNet solution - InsightNet Service Level Agreement is ready to facilitate the implementation of new types and class of services. Thanks to this module operator can see its network state from the business point of view – how the quality of the network and services impacts revenue from the network. This approach is especially important in today’s high competitive market where the quality and price decides about the customer satisfaction and finally about customer retention processes.

External Links

ComArch

More flexible WLAN topology choices, increased system scalability, and additions to RF management capabilities

Trapeze Networks today announced major additions to its award-winning Mobility System that provide IT with the most flexible and scalable deployment options available to build a secure, service-rich, and operationally efficient WLAN. With the new hardware and software, Trapeze provides the complete set of tools needed to deploy a distributed or centralized WLAN and makes system capabilities, rather than topology, the focal point for customers selecting a WLAN architecture. 

“The deployment flexibility, secure mobility, identity-based network services, and low operational costs that Trapeze delivers persuaded our company to standardize on the Trapeze Mobility System as our WLAN infrastructure provider,” said Logitech chief technology officer Pierre-Olivier Monnier. “With the Trapeze Mobility System, we can deploy WLANs of different sizes and topologies as they make sense in our various locations, yet deliver a consistent user experience and common IT capabilities.”

The new Mobility System Software 2.0 allows IT to position the Mobility Exchanges (WLAN switches) and Mobility Points (access points) anywhere in the network. IT can choose to directly connect the two devices or use the existing wired network to link them. The system also provides stronger support for third-party APs, including powering them via standard Power over Ethernet (PoE) and modeling their RF patterns in a given customer’s environment. All existing Mobility Exchanges and Mobility Points can support the new system functionality.

Trapeze is also expanding its line of Mobility Exchanges to include the MX-8, ideal for smaller deployments or remote offices, and a data-center oriented version, the MX-400, for centralized deployments. Rounding out the Mobility System enhancements is RingMaster 2.0 which delivers 3D planning and management capabilities that allow IT to plan a building rather than just single floors at a time.

“Successful enterprise-class wireless LAN deployments often involve a range of products to meet application requirements from network edge to network core,” said Craig J. Mathias, a principal with the wireless advisory firm Farpoint Group. “Trapeze’s new Mobility Exchanges and Mobility System 2.0 software add capabilities and features essential to scaling WLANs from small to large installations.”

While all WLAN systems purport to enable mobility, only the Trapeze Mobility System delivers secure roaming over any network topology without forcing IT to change the wired backbone configuration. The system provides wireless access to customers’ existing wired networks, preserving all their network engineering such as VLAN/subnet structure and filters. It integrates with authentication, authorization, and accounting (AAA) servers to provide services based on user identity, called Identity-Based Networking, which lets IT centralize policies for network access, traffic prioritization, and mobility services that persist wherever users roam. The Trapeze Mobility System remains the easiest WLAN to plan and run and therefore offers the lowest total cost of ownership in the industry.

 


Topology independence

Trapeze 2.0 Mobility System Software supports any WLAN configuration model desired including centralized deployments with the Mobility Exchange in a data center or distributed deployments with Mobility Exchanges in the wiring closets. The Mobility Exchanges support direct or indirect connections to Mobility Points and third-party APs. Trapeze enables IT to retain their existing investment in third-party APs, supporting a broad set of services including planning and integration, RF modeling, channel and power management, security, and PoE.

Exchange family of switches

The MX-8 supports eight 10/100 Mbps Ethernet ports, providing PoE to both Mobility Points and third-party APs. IT can aggregate any combination of UTP ports on the MX-8 to provide high-bandwidth uplinks into the wired network. The MX-8 is available with either a single or redundant power supplies. An MX-8 can manage configurations for up to eight Mobility Points.

The MX-400 is designed for deployment in the data center and can control Mobility Points or third-party APs over existing wired infrastructure. The four Gigabit Ethernet ports can be aggregated to create a high-bandwidth backbone link, and the MX-400 can manage configurations for up to 100 Mobility Points. It accommodates redundant, hot-swappable power supplies.

The MX-20, shipping since 2003, provides 20 10/100 Mbps Ethernet ports and two gigabit interface connectors (GBICs). With the Mobility System Software 2.0, the MX-20 can now manage configurations for up to 40 Mobility Points and can be deployed in a centralized or distributed fashion depending on the user’s needs.       

All Trapeze Mobility Exchanges support the same topology independence and can sit anywhere in the network. They also share the same architectural features, including Identity-Based Networking, secure roaming for clients, dynamic support for users’ private groups, strong mutual authentication and encryption, voice support, rogue detection, and RF management. They also provide key AAA offload features such as running the Extensible Authentication Protocols (EAP) and encryption key management.

RingMaster 2.0 with 3D Awareness

RingMaster 2.0 adds 3D awareness to this full-featured tool suite that enables IT managers to perform pre- and post- deployment planning, configuration, verification, management and optimization of the WLAN infrastructure. No other WLAN system tool recognizes and defines building attenuation factors, so no other tool can pinpoint the optimal location for access points or user or rogue AP location. In addition, RingMaster remains the only WLAN tool that ties modeling to deployment, allowing a user to plan and then configure and deploy hundreds of Mobility Points in a single step. Now with 3D awareness, RingMaster allows  IT the ability to plan an entire building rather than just a floor, and the built-in library of measured attenuation factors ensures that RingMaster understands how RF will flow through the particular environment.

Pricing and Availability

The MX-8 and Mobility System Software 2.0 are both shipping now in the United States, Europe, and Asia. The MX-400 will ship next quarter. The MX-8 has a US list price of $2,995, and the MX-400 list price will be $21,995. The new starter kit price starts at $6,995 which includes one MX-8, four dual radio Mobility Points that support 802.11a/b/g and a RingMaster license. The new Mobility Point pricing is $549 for a dual radio Mobility Point and $449 for a single radio Mobility Point. Updates to the Mobility System Software are free for customers with SafetyNet™ service.

External Links

Trapeze Networks

Fastrack M1306B GSM/GPRS modem offers new features and compact size

Wavecom SA (NASDAQ: WVCM; Euronext: AVM; ISIN: FR0000073066) announced today the launch of a new GSM/GPRS modem for machine-to-machine (M2M) applications, the Fastrack M1306B.

In countless applications in sectors ranging from security and health care to telemetry and fleet management, wireless connectivity is being used to provide a communications link to fixed and mobile islands of information. Wireless M2M combines telecommunications and information technology to automate processes, to integrate all a company's assets with its IT system, and to create value-added services. Market researchers expect that "calls" between machines will outnumber voice calls by 2006, as more and more companies discover the advantages of adding wireless connectivity to remote assets.

Wavecom invested in the wireless M2M market as early as 1997, and has continued to lead the way with innovations such as the introduction of the first open software platform for wireless M2M modules in 2001 and the first integrated GSM/GPRS/GPS module in 2003. Its range of Fastrack modems has proven itself for stable, reliable performance on wireless networks worldwide for more than five years. Updated with new features, Fastrack continues to deliver rapid time to market and painless integration for M2M applications.

The Fastrack M1306B modem is perfect for adding robust and compact wireless capability to existing applications, such as remote control and monitoring, vending, and fleet management. By embedding applications directly onto the modem using Wavecom's open software environment, Open AT, developers can reduce the number of components needed and thereby the cost of the total solution.

Housed in a rugged metallic casing measuring only 73 x 54 x 25 mm, weighing 82 grams, the Fastrack M1306B offers two general purpose input/output access points, which can be multiplexed with an I2C bus to connect peripherals. In addition, a new serial auto shut down feature enables a programmable energy conservation mode especially valuable for battery-powered applications. Fully certified, the dual-band 900/1800 MHz Fastrack M1306B offers GPRS Class 10 capability and supports IT protocols such as IP connectivity.

Commenting on the announcement Olivier Beaujard, Wavecom's Vertical Applications Marketing Director, said: "Having pioneered the vertical applications market for many years, we are extremely satisfied to see it becoming the business reality we foresaw. With a dedicated organization including adapted support and engineering, Wavecom will continue to provide M2M customers with tailored solutions as applications grow more sophisticated and wireless networking standards evolve."

The Fastrack M1306B will be available in the third quarter of 2004.

External Links

Wavecom