Paging Enterprise Customers . . .

Pagers have given way to smart phones, SMS and wireless e-mail devices, but plenty of businesses and government agencies still rely on them to deliver urgent messages. Cingular Wireless wants that to change that.

The carrier just launched its Enterprise Paging gateway, built from the ground up. The service uses phones’ existing text messaging capability so there’s no software to download.

It’s available through all of Cingular’s text-capable handsets and wireless handhelds and features a long message format that allows up to 456 characters, delivery receipts and two-way messaging.

The service works in the United States and in more than 170 other countries and is built on industry standards, including the Simple Network Paging Protocol (SNPP) and Wireless Communications Transfer Protocol (WCTP).

In addition, Enterprise Paging integrates with enterprise applications such as IT help desk, Customer Relationship Management and automated notification systems.

Michael Woodward, Cingular’s executive director of mobile professional solutions, said there are prospective customers for the service in all vertical industries.

The top segments for enterprise paging are expected to be IT operations and support, mobile sales forces, mobile field support, dispatch, health care and disaster recovery, he said.

Cingular will charge $9.99 a month per user for unlimited incoming messages and 10 cents per reply.

The Atlanta-based carrier, which is jointly owned by regional telecoms BellSouth and SBC , said its bulk provisioning technology can activate the service for thousands of corporate users at once.

It’s Cingular’s second move this month to woo business users. Earlier it announced an addition to its BlackBerry lineup.

Research In Motion’s BlackBerry 8700c running on Cingular’s network provides faster Web browsing, application performance and attachment viewing, more storage to run enterprise applications and integrated phone features.

Updates prior version to add comment from Cingular

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