Funambol upgrades open-source BlackBerry rival

Funambol Inc. is offering a new version of its open-source software for delivering push e-mail, address book and calendar functions similar to those available on BlackBerry devices.

Users can download Version 6 of the Java-based server application, which runs on Linux and Windows servers. Funambol allows wireless operators, Internet companies and businesses to push e-mail to mobile devices from Exchange, Domino, IMAP/POP servers. It also is designed to synchronize contacts and calendar data between servers and devices that support the open-source SyncML (Synchronization Markup Language) standard.

Among the many enhancements in the latest version is direct SQL database support for address book and calendar information, which allows for faster synchronization and more efficient data storage.

In addition, data can now be compressed with Funambol’s Gzip tool to reduce the volume of data to be synched, and the push e-mail configuration has been simplified.

Moreover, plug-ins for Windows Mobile and Office have been given new interfaces to make them more user friendly.

Launched in 2001, Funambol offers two editions of its software: the Community Edition, a product of the open-source Funambol community, and the commercial Carrier Edition. The commercial product offers additional features, such as the capability for users to manage their device settings and preferences via a portal that can be integrated into a carrier’s Web site.

Additional information about the Funambol community, company and software applications is available on the group’s Web site.

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