Sybase Expands Wireless E-Mail Line

The company's iAnywhere subsidiary unveils a new family of wireless e-mail products for both desktop and server environments.

Sybase Inc. subsidiary iAnywhere Solutions Inc. this week introduced a new family of wireless e-mail products for both desktop and server environments.

The new Pylon family takes advantage of the technology that Sybase gained when it acquired wireless communications company AvantGo Inc. last February.

"This is really the first step toward the integration of the two product lines," said Diana Ungersma, senior product manager at iAnywhere, in Dublin, Calif.

The new products on the desktop side include the latest versions of Pylon Conduit and Pylon Pro.

Pylon Conduit extends IBM Lotus Software Divisions Notes e-mail, contact, calendar and expense report data to mobile devices. Pylon Pro includes the same capabilities, plus support for databases and other applications. The new versions best their predecessors by including the ability to view attachments on both Palm OS and Pocket PC devices. For Pocket PC devices, the synchronization speed is twice as fast as with previous products, Ungersma said.

New on the server side is Pylon Anywhere, which combines Mail Anywhere Studio and Pylon PIM Server and adds some new wireless features courtesy of AvantGo. These include instant access to e-mail via alerts, periodic automatic wireless synchronization and push, depending on what the device supports. The software, which works with both Lotus Notes and Microsoft Corp.s Exchange platform, also supports attachments and lets users preview e-mail during synchronization.

The products are available immediately. They are priced on a per-user licensing basis, and pricing depends on the volume of licenses.

Both Microsoft and Lotus are working to integrate wireless capabilities into their platforms, but analysts say there is still a place for third-party software like iAnywheres.

"They will have some level of mobile e-mail functionality within their upcoming solutions," said Stephen Drake, a program manager at International Data Corp., in Framingham, Mass. "Certainly thats a threat, but those will be version one products that address their existing product base, whereas most of the third parties address both Exchange and Notes, and they support back-end applications other than e-mail."