3Com Corporation Licenses Bluetooth Technology from Extended Systems

    Extended Systems (Nasdaq:XTND), a world leader in short-range wireless connectivity, announced today that it has licensed its Bluetooth software technology to 3Com Corporation (Nasdaq:COMS) for use in Palm, Inc. products.

    Bluetooth technology is a global specification for small form factor, low-cost, wireless communication and networking between PCs, mobile phones and other portable devices. Endorsed by leading PC, PDA, and telecommunications manufacturers, Bluetooth uses an omni-directional radio signal to connect multiple devices up to 10 meters apart. It replaces proprietary cables, providing seamless voice and data transmission via wireless, short-range radio.

    To implement Bluetooth wireless communications, Extended Systems' embedded protocol stack has been ported to run with the Palm operating system. The stack manages the sending and receiving of data according to the Bluetooth 1.0 specification, utilizing defined user application profiles, such as file transfer, synchronization, object push, dial-up networking, FAX and LAN access.

    Extended Systems will present a Bluetooth technology demonstration at booth no. 1505 at the Wireless Symposium in San Jose, CA February 22-24. 3Com and Extended Systems will present Bluetooth technology demonstrations at their kiosks in the Bluetooth Pavilion, in Hall 1, Stand B4d, Booth 8 at CeBIT 2000, February 24-March 1, 2000.

    "3Com continues to build on its commitment to the Bluetooth wireless communications standard," said Steve Parker, 3Com's Bluetooth Product Line Manager. "By combining forces with companies like Extended Systems, 3Com hopes to provide people and businesses with cordless connectivity to voice, data and e-business applications regardless of their physical location."

    "Teaming with 3Com on Bluetooth is a natural extension of our software development leadership," explained Steve Simpson, president and CEO of Extended Systems. "We welcome the opportunity to contribute to the explosive growth of Bluetooth. Together with our PC applications and hardware solutions, our embedded protocol stacks continue to fuel the growth of mobile information management by expanding the sphere of wireless connectivity."

    In March of 1998, Extended Systems first introduced short-range wireless connectivity to the Palm platform with Infrared Data Association (IrDA)-compliant communications for Palm III(R) and later devices. IrDA infrared is the most efficient wireless means of making fast data transfers and establishing ad-hoc connections between one device and another. Bluetooth complements IrDA infrared's point-and-shoot strength with omni-directional signaling, longer distance communications, and capacity to penetrate solid objects.

    Short-range Wireless Connectivity

    In the future, mobile users will operate several specialized devices to connect to and manage data. To do this, open standards are needed for interoperability between devices. Bluetooth radio frequency and IrDA infrared are global specifications for short-range wireless connectivity, endorsed by the leading PC, PDA and cellular phone manufacturers. Extended Systems develops protocol software, which enables mobile devices to exercise short-range wireless communications. In 1994, the company helped found the Infrared Data Association and subsequently authored the specification for Object Exchange (OBEX), a file transfer model adopted by both the Infrared Data Association and the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG).

    The Bluetooth SIG is driven by the common goal of revolutionizing connectivity for both personal and business mobile devices. Formed in May of 1998, and having grown faster than any other wireless specification to over 1,300 members, the Bluetooth SIG is led by a nine-company Promoter Group including 3Com Corporation, Ericsson, IBM Corporation, Intel Corporation, Lucent Technologies, Microsoft Corporation, Motorola Inc., Nokia, and Toshiba Corporation. By working together, the Promoter Group companies will combine their respective skills to help drive the program forward as Bluetooth enabled products come to market. More information is available at www.bluetooth.com.

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