Carrier briefs

Hoping to fend off a potential patent suit, Good Technology Inc. confirmed last month that it has filed suit against rival Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) over a patent RIM holds on delivering wireless e-mail messages. In an apparent peremptory move, the startup is asking a California court for a declaratory judgement stating that it does not infringe upon RIM’s Single Mailbox Integration patent. The patent relates to how information is directed from a host computer to RIM’s popular BlackBerry wireless devices. Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Good Technology employs similar technology in its wireless e-mail service, and is asking the court for protection against a patent infringement claim.

MCK Communications Inc. recently announced a telephony system for teleworkers, the RemoteConneX PBXgateway with RemoteConneX Phones. Users plug the interactive screen phone into an analogue connection, follow instructions, and then use the phone as if they were sitting in the office. Incoming corporate calls are redirected to the phone; unanswered calls are routed back to corporate voice mail, giving users a single mailbox. Features include call hold, transfer, conference, four-digit internal dialling and access to corporate directories. The system is available now and costs from US$580 to US$700 per user, including phones.

Software applications and Web services will drive the IT market for the next three to five years, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC). Last year’s favourite was 3G (third-generation) wireless services. PwC’s latest Technology Forecast:2002-2004 report, Navigating the Future of Software, said the focus is now on software to drive the value of IT. The report also highlighted a growth in analytics and collaboration software, portals and real-time information. PwC also predicted users will start to pay subscriptions for software and Web usage, and open source will become a viable alternative in the near term.

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