Visto Inc. this week will introduce the next version of its wireless e-mail access platform, which includes improved security and data transport features.
Visto Mobile 5.0 supports two-way, IP-based push for e-mail, calendar and contact information; previous versions were synchronization-based.
The platform includes better data compression than previous versions, said officials at the Redwood City, Calif., company. The software will be available through carriers later this year, both in carrier-hosted and behind-the-firewall enterprise editions.
Vistos current U.S. carrier partners are AT&T Wireless Services Inc. and Nextel Communications Inc. Officials said a third major carrier will offer Visto service on a variety of devices by the end of the year.
Visto officials said the new version will make the software compete more directly with wireless e-mail veteran Research In Motion Ltd. and its BlackBerry Enterprise Server platform.
Vistos software includes features that RIM wont offer until later this year, such as the ability to provision client software wirelessly. Visto 5.0 also is designed to run on myriad device platforms, including Microsoft Corp.s Windows Mobile 2003 systems, Symbian Ltd.s Symbian OS, Java 2 Micro Edition and Palmsource Inc.s Palm OS.
While RIM recently opened its software licenses to third-party software and hardware makers through its BlackBerry Connect program, RIMs own devices make up the majority of devices that currently connect to BlackBerry server software.
"We have an installed base of Palm PDA products, and were playing with the idea of supporting some sort of Palm/PDA combo device," said Erich Berman, advanced technical consultant at Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., in Milwaukee, and an eWEEK Corporate Partner.