Wireless companies are trying to add more bang for the buck to corporate networks by extending applications to mobile workers.
Corporations have invested billions in their infrastructures, but many workers spend most of the time away from their desks. "Its great stuff, but it cant be accessed," said Jason Guesman, director of business marketing at Sprint PCS. "There are a lot of companies trying to solve this problem."
Sprint PCS is making deals with software vendors to help mobile users access intranet-based information. Last week, the nationwide operator announced partnerships with Infowave and Everypath, two companies that help enterprises extend corporate applications out to mobile workers. Sprint PCS will help sell the companies products to its enterprise wireless customers.
The deals are coups for Infowave and Everypath, which can benefit from Sprint PCS clout. "Sprint brings credibility and understanding," said Ron Jasper, vice president of marketing at Infowave.
Sprint PCS has similar arrangements with other vendors, but said each company has slightly different benefits that meet varying customer demands. "People like to have choices, and what were trying to do is sort out the best of breed," Guesman said.
Sprint PCS chose to work with Infowave for its wireless business engine: flexible software that can connect a back-end application like Microsoft Exchange to a number of devices, ranging from laptops to phones, formatting the data for the device.
Everypath believes customers will choose its software for speed of implementation. "In a lot of cases, the end can look the same, but the question is how to get there," said Scott Weller, senior director of telecom at Everypath. Everypaths platform allows technology managers to use a graphical user interface to create mobile applications in any markup language so corporate applications can be extended to any device.
These companies hope Sprint PCS can help them push enterprises into making wireless investments during the market downturn.
In other news, Deutsche Telekom and France Télécom sold their 10 percent stakes in Sprint as promised when France Télécom took full ownership of Global One, the venture created by the three. Deutsche Telekom and France Télécom each will collect about $1.6 billion from the sale.