IBM Unveils Wireless Education Services

The package, aimed at helping schools build wireless broadband and VOIP networks, is built on IBM's WebSphere platform and includes consulting and technical assistance service.

PHILADELPHIA—Trading on its experience in technology build-outs at campuses around the country, IBM is rolling out a campus service package for wireless broadband communications and voice-over-IP networks.

The company announced the package at the W2i Digital Cities Convention meeting here this week. The offering, called the Wireless Campus for Education, is built on IBMs WebSphere open Internet platform and includes consulting and technical assistance service.

According to Don Spaulding, director of information services and technology for the Syracuse City School District in Syracuse, N.Y., the system gives students "unparalleled access" to resources, including audio and video resources, while allowing students, teachers and parents to work together. IBM worked with carriers to create a wireless broadband network and VOIP coverage across the districts 22 schools.

Diana Hage, director of wireless solutions and business development at IBM Global Services, said the Syracuse school district and the University of Central Arkansas demonstrate the range of applications that schools can implement using the services.

At the Syracuse schools, the package provides a security system that controls access to confidential student data while enabling students and faculty to participate in video conferences or give presentations from remote locations. VOIP support enables a school district to link schools with such things as online directories, interactive class lists and district announcements.

IBM and its partners developed a hosting mechanism for the University of Central Arkansas cellular network that allows the school to share revenues on calls made from campus. The system offers a backbone to carriers and improves coverage for the more than 10,000 cellular users on campus.

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