Product hits

Sign on the pixilated line

Interlink Electronics of Camarillo, Calif. has released the ePad XL interactive signature terminal. Designed for deployment in banks, hotels, car rental counters and other customer-facing businesses, the device captures, encrypts and verifies signatures, ATM card data and other customer information. It features a 5.7” pressure sensitive LCD screen and a data rate of 200 reports per second. On the security side the device employs secure terminal technology, including secure key injection, tamper response, a dedicated security processor, firmware authentication, file authentication, PIN encryption, master/session key, DUKPT, and single and triple DES 64 and 128 bit keys.

Availability: Available now. URL:

Sun takes on IBM and Intel with new multithreaded processor

Originally scheduled to launch in early 2006, Sun Microsystems has moved-up release of the UltraSparc T1, the multithreaded, multicore processor formerly code-named Niagara. The new chip incorporates Sun’s CoolThreads multithreading technology and will be available in four-, six-, and eight-core implementations running at a clock speed of either 1GHz or 1.2GHz. Sun said the chip consumes about 70 watts of power, which it said is much less than Intel’s Xeon processor or IBM’s Power chips.

Availability: By year-end. URL:

New infoWeb release aims to reduce paperwork

Toronto’s Xenos Group has released version 5.2 of its infoWeb product, a tool for automating enterprise report delivery. The release includes new features around document, e-forms and scanned image management. It supports versioning, annotation, and metadata, and includes a workflow engine to automate internal routing of critical business information. A single interface also offers a consolidated view to stored reports across multiple instances of the tool. A Web services interface also allows reports and information to be pushed-out externally through corporate portals.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: Starting at $85,000 for a 2-CPU server. URL:

Intel’s latest flash chip runs faster with more storage

Intel Corp. has launched its latest flash memory product, the M18, a chip the company promises improves the speed and lower the power consumption of the preferred storage method for mobile phones. The company said the chip writes information three times faster than its older L18 chip and reads information twice as fast, By building it using its 90-nanometer manufacturing technology, Intel said it uses half the power of the L18. The new chip is also available in a denser package, with 256MB and 512MB chips shipping. Intel can stack two 512MB chips for a total of 1GB of storage. Several phone vendors are testing the M18 chip, including Sony Ericcson Mobile Communications AB and NEC Corp.

Availability: Now shipping to select vendors. URL:

Prototype US$100 laptop unveiled

A group of researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have unveiled a hand-crank powered, US$100 laptop designed to bring computing and the Internet to the schoolchildren of developing countries. It will be sold only to governments, with a minimum purchase of one million laptops. The 500Mhz laptop features a low-power display that can be switched from colour to black and white to allow viewing in bright sunlight, and can be folded in different ways to serve as a computer, electronic book or media player. It will run on Linux or a similar open-source operating system, and the creators say the applications will also be open-source. A launch is planned in the New Year in test markets in the Middle East, Latin America, Africa and Asia. It could be available commercially at some point in the $200 range, said the creators.

Availability: February 2006 to select test markets. Pricing: US$100, to governments only. URL:

Fujitsu offers nearline FC drive for Eternus storage

Fujitsu Ltd. has begun offering two new hard disk drives for users of its Eternus storage systems. The new drives are available in 400GB and 500GB capacities with Fiber Channel interfaces for use as nearline storage drives in Eternus 3000 or 6000 disk array systems. Use of the higher capacity drive raises the total storage capacity of an Eternus 3000 system to 118TBand an Eternus 6000 system to 500TB. Nearline storage is typically used for applications such as back-up and archiving and so doesn’t require as high a performance as primary storage drives. Fujitsu’s new drive includes an “eco-mode” that stops the drive spindle when the drive isn’t needed. That means the drive uses less energy than would otherwise be the case.

Availability: Available now in Japan, worldwide by year-end. URL:

Panasonic ships ‘rugged’ ultra light notebooks

Panasonic Computer Solutions Co. has unveiled two new ultra-portable “tough” notebooks for the business traveler, designed to stand up to baggage claim carousels. Weighing in at about three pounds, the Toughbook T4 and W4 notebooks are lighter then the average eight-pound Toughbook, and feature an external switch to turn-off the internal WiFi card. The 3.4-pound T4 features a 12.1-inch touch screen display, Intel’s Ultra Low Voltage Pentium M 753 processor, 512M bytes of SDRAM, a 40GB removable hard drive and Intel’s Pro/Wireless 2915ABG wireless chip, and is rated for around 9.5 hours of battery life. The 2.8-pound W4 comes in a similar configuration, but features an integrated DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive and is rated for six hours of battery life.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: US$2,149. URL: business/toughbook/home.asp

Sage unveils 2006 Simply Accounting line

Richmond, B.C.-based Sage Software has released the 2006 versions of its Simply Accounting line of bilingual business accounting software for the SMB market. The line includes Simply Accounting Basic, Pro, Premium and a new Accountants’ Edition. Sage said after extensive user consultations, usability changes have been made throughout to simplify and streamline the product. New features include an improved user interface, additional wizards for common tasks, and enhancements to payroll workflow. Rather than having to install all three versions, Sage said the new Accountant’s Edition will allow accountants to work with all client files, and new tools will allow accountants to synchronize year-end entries with their clients’ data files.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: Basic $149, Pro after rebates ranges from $219 to $599 depending on users, Premium after rebates from $399 to $899. URL:

Bringing PBX functionalities to VoIP users (CDN)

Mediatrix Telecom Inc. of Montreal, a developer of VoIP access devices and gateways, has released Dial IPCS, a communications server designed for remote line extensions and branch-office connectivity. Based on Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) standards, the company said Dial IPCS allows for VoIP deployment while preserving a company’s investment in legacy telephones and faxes. Used in combination with Mediatrix gateways, Dial IPCS lets companies deploy VoIP solutions that connect distant locations while maintaining all major PBX features available in their head office. As such, Mediatrix said remote workers and home offices can be connected and benefit from features like voice mail, 3-way call conferencing and call forward.

Availability: Available now. URL:

Cisco gets hip to mesh, WLAN management

Cisco Systems has announced products to support centrally managed, large WiFi and mesh networks for outdoor WLAN deployments. The company’s Unified Wireless Network uses a centralized architecture for deploying WLANs across the enterprise. The WLAN management modules will be integrated with Cisco’s flagship enterprise and branch-office switching and routing products, including both the Catalyst 6500 enterprise router, which is capable of controlling as many as 1500 APs, and the 2800 and 3800 branch-office routers, which control a maximum of six APs. Cisco’s mesh-networking entry, the Aironet 1500 Series, is an outdoor wireless AP that comes with two radios. The WiFi radio handles access, and the second radio is dedicated to wireless interconnectivity across wireless and wired APs.

Availability: Available now. URL:

Rogers tool automates forms for mobile workers

Rogers Communications has introduced mForms, a wireless tool for SMBs that uses technology from HP, Microsoft and TrueContext to convert paper and voice-based data exchanges — such as work orders — into wireless communications on mobile devices. The forms include pre-filled customer and job information to save time, and completed forms are securely transmitted from the device back to the office for processing and invoicing. Businesses can also route processes like timesheets and expense reports through the same platform.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: Starts at $125 per user, per month, plus mobile device. URL:

UTStarcom Pocket PC 6700 launches with Telus Mobility

UTStarcom Personal Communications has launched its Pocket PC 6700 in Canada on the Telus Mobility network. The companies say it’s the first Pocket PC in Canada running version 5.0 of Microsoft’s Windows Mobile OS. The device offers high-speed mobile access to e-mail, the Internet and services such as music downloads and streaming video. The OS includes updated Microsoft Office applications, including a new mobile version of PowerPoint, and the device features a QWERTY keyboard, 1.3-megapixel digital camera, WiFi and Bluetooth capability, and a mini-SD slot.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: $399.99 on a three-year contract, $549.99 with no contract. URL:

Cloakware updates password manager

Cloakware Inc. has upgraded its Cloakware Server Password Manager (CSPM) software for application-to-application authentication. The company said instead of relying on IDs and passwords that are “hard-coded” into applications requiring access to data stored on servers, CSPM allows corporate developers to embed routines into their applications that acquire credentials for access at runtime from a central credential store. Version 2.0 features password synchronization that automatically changes application passwords.

Availability: Available now. Pricing: CSPM software US$1,000 per ID-and-password combination, appliance US$100,000. URL:


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