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Messaging in the Friendly Skies

In its largest implementation of hosted Microsoft Exchange 2000 to date, USA.Net today announced it will implement an upgrade for more than 30,000 United Airlines pilots and flight attendants.

United Airlines had been using USA.Net Performance Messaging, a proprietary Web-based e-mail service. The goal of the upgrade is to provide United Airlines employees with a more feature-rich product, according to the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based ASP that specializes messaging.

By moving to Exchange 2000, pilots and flight attendants will be able to take advantage of calendaring, reminders and an enriched address book as well as enhanced features such as Advanced Secure eMessaging and Blackberry Wireless support.

"We have worked with USA.Net for more than two years, and they have a tremendous track record of executing and delivering on time," said Eric Dean, chief information officer of United Airlines, in a statement. "It is critically important to United that our pilots and flight attendants have reliable access to up-to-date information through our messaging system."

USA.Net, a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner for Hosting and Application Services, offers Exchange 2000 on a multi-tier basis, giving users the option to chose from Platinum, Gold and Silver services. The different tiers vary in pricing, service level agreements (SLAs), storage and features set.

"USA.Net's hosted Microsoft Exchange 2000 eMessaging solution demonstrates the software as a service concept — providing United Airlines increased messaging functionality for its mobile employees, with predictable costs, tiered service plans and a guaranteed service level," said Pascal Martin, general manager of platform and application hosting at Microsoft Corp. "We are extremely pleased that one of our elite partners is delivering on the .NET vision."

USA.Net reports that more than 5,000 businesses use its hosted services. Other high-profile customers include American Express, Palm and Saturn.


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