HP and Ericsson in unified messaging alliance

18 Feb 2004

In what has been a major day for Hewlett-Packard’s aspirations for the mobile front, the computing giant signed a major unified messaging pact with Ericsson that would result in businesspeople enjoying seamless voice and data services whether they are in the office or on the road.

With news in four different solutions areas, HP reinforced its emphasis on modular, standards-based, low-cost paths for operators to create, deliver and manage new mobile services.

The computer giant announced significant improvements in two of its strategic market offerings; version 2.0 of the HP Mobile Service Delivery Platform and upgrades in key elements of the HP Integrated Service Management platform, including a new prepaid, real-time billing solution and enhanced fraud management solutions.

But the overwhelming news of the day was HP’s pact with Ericsson to drive convergence in telephony and IT infrastructures for both operators and private enterprises based in internet protocol (IP) technologies.

Targeted at large as well as small and medium-sized businesses, the solution enables employers to provide seamless voice and data services for employees, whether they are in the office or travelling. Employees also can reduce the number of devices they use and can have a single phone number for both mobile and fixed calling.

The converged solution combines multiple, high-overhead systems such as deskside voice services (for example, voicemail) and deskside data services (for example, email and instant messaging) regardless of the networking technology. It also integrates mobile services that are provided through wireless operators.

The HP solution is fundamentally modular, so an enterprise can begin with its existing infrastructure and add components as needed, without disrupting operations. HP claims it also enables a positive return on investment because 50-75pc of the needed components are already in place. Also, since the solution is standards-based, HP says it is an attractive environment for software developers to create innovative communications applications.

The solution initially is expected to be available in Europe during the second quarter and in the rest of the world by the end of the year.

“Unified communications has long been an important objective for businesses, and Ericsson and HP have taken a huge step forward toward this goal,” said Sebastiano Tevarotto, vice-president and general manager, Network and Service Provider Solutions, HP Services. “This open, modular solution illustrates how the HP Adaptive Enterprise strategy can help enterprises evolve their communications systems to take advantage of IP technologies.”

“HP and Ericsson have complementary strengths in the telephony and enterprise markets, and this new solution demonstrates how the two companies can co-operate to deliver real business value for customers anywhere in the world,” said Mats Dahlin, president, Ericsson Enterprise.

By John Kennedy