RealTime IT News

HP, Nokia in Wireless M2M Deal

Finnish cell phone giant Nokia on Tuesday announced a deal with Hewlett Packard to wirelessly connect remote machines using integrated machine-to-machine (M2M) software.

The deal would allow corporate clients to wirelessly manage services like utility meter reading, vending machine operation, elevator control, fleet and traffic control and other business processes that deal with remote assets.

"Companies that rely on remote machinery and facilities and extended manufacturing chains for services are expected to be among the first adopters of M2M connectivity software," the companies announced.

The moves to connect remote workforces and equipment using wireless technology is nothing new and companies like Palm , Handspring and Research in Motion have all focused heavily on enterprise tools to tap into this market.

However, by teaming up with a market leader like Nokia, HP now gets a legitimate partner to roll out the M2M service to businesses in the U.S. Customized M2M software area already up and running in Europe and the two companies hope to expand its availability in other regions in the coming months.

A typical M2M solution would include tying together the Nokia M2M Platform, HP's OpenView product suite components on an HP-UX or HP ProLiant server backbone. The Nokia M2M Platform would provide the infrastructure for allowing data communications between devices and Internet-hosted applications.

The Nokia M2M Gateway acts as a bridging element between the GSM network and the company intranet and provides wireless connection and Internet protocol (IP) translation between applications located in the company server and in the remote devices.

It ties into the HP OpenView management environment, which us used to manage the infrastructure and any alarms that come from the machines.

Analysts praised the opportunities the deal provides for big companies with remote workforces. Lars Vestergaard, research manager from IDC, said HP and Nokia provide a "very interesting combination in the M2M space," noting that collaboration between two big-name companies can produce positive results.

Separately, Nokia inked a deal with international sports marketing firm IMG to develop an MMS Essential Sports Service that delivers sports news, images and audio commentary to cell phones.

The wireless service would be available in the U.S., Europe and Asia and would be marketed to Nokia's operator customers, who would brand the services independently.

The deal calls for multimedia messages to be sent between MMS-capable phones via the Nokia Multimedia Terminal Gateway. Nokia's software would provide content storage, voice messaging over MMS, connectivity to e-mail, and rich push/pull applications.