RealTime IT News

NEC, Sun Expand High-End Systems Pact

NEC and Sun Microsystems are taking their relationship to a higher level thanks to a new hardware/software pact.

The two companies said the partnerhsip is an expansion of their five-year-old partnership for high-end systems, joint systems integration, securing voice and data, and better collaboration for the development of middleware software. The pact will center on Japanese markets first, especially for mobile phone carriers and network markets. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The partnership is mutually beneficial for NEC and Sun as both companies compete against IBM, HP and Fujitsu for global service contracts.

"Our visions have always been aligned, and now we can say that our products and services offerings are more complementary than ever, a synergistic partnership from ASICS at the chip level to the middleware layer all the way through systems integration," Sun CEO Scott McNealy said in a statement.

To make sure their joint customers are on the same page, NEC said it is dedicating more resources to integrating its systems with Sun's Solaris OS, so they can work well with other multi-vendor environments. For example, NEC said it will optimize its Multimedia Information Platform (NEMIP) for use on Sun's Solaris server OS. NEC said it would also begin offering its Open Mission Critical System (OMCS) technology on Sun's Solaris platform.

For providers, both companies said they would combine NEC's IP telephony product, UNIVERGE/SV 7000, and Sun's Sun Ray ultra-thin client technology. NEC said it would use the architecture as a key component of its customer relationship management solutions for next-generation call centers.

In the middleware space, NEC and Sun said they have concluded integration tests and quality verification for key components of their middleware stacks: the NEC "VALUMOware" and Sun Java Enterprise System (JES).

NEC said its "WebSAM MCOperation" and "DiosaGlobe MCOne" are now compatible with Sun's JES for use in operations management and operating platform scenarios. Both companies also said they intend to expand their middleware collaborations from Solaris running on UltraSPARC to include Solaris running on the x86 and x64 platforms.

NEC and Sun said they have also combined the talents of the Sun Java System Access Manager and the Sun Java System Identity Manager software with the NEC Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) products as a systems integration aspect for the identity market.

Both companies also pledged support for investigating further technology collaboration in the areas of autonomic computing and Web services.

In order to keep the momentum going, both companies said they are setting up testing teams to run proof of concepts for customers at NEC's iBest Solution Center in Mita, Japan, the NEC Broadband Solution Center in Shinagawa, Japan and the Sun iForce Center in Yoga, Japan.