Aether Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq:AETH), a leading provider of wireless data products and services and MICROS Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq:MCRS), a leading provider of information technology solutions for the hospitality industry, have formed an alliance to jointly develop wireless technology products and services for the hospitality industry.
Initially, the companies plan to create an application that will allow consumers to use wireless devices including phones, personal digital assistants (PDAs) and two-way pagers to view and pay tabs at restaurants and other hospitality venues such as ballparks or theme parks.
In addition, the companies plan to develop and market a wireless area network product for the hospitality industry that would allow managers to use wireless devices to more effectively monitor and manage staff and equipment.
Aether plans to add these products and services to its "mobile wallet," currently being developed to provide a range of commerce applications via wireless devices. MICROS and Aether will begin development in the next several weeks with plans for pilot programs during the fourth quarter.
"With over 120,000 systems in use at the most popular restaurants and entertainment venues around the world, MICROS is clearly an outstanding partner for extending our mobile wallet application to the hospitality industry," said Aether General Manager of Wireless Commerce, Rod Stambaugh. "By combining our expertise in wireless technology with their state-of-the-art systems and global reach, we plan to deliver an exciting new suite of products and services."
Terms of the agreement stipulate MICROS will be the preferred provider for Aether in the hospitality industry. The companies also plan to develop joint marketing plans for the wireless products and services they create.
"As a leader in information technology for the hospitality industry, it is vital for MICROS to be allied with a strong IT provider to create superior wireless solutions," stated Thomas L. Patz, Executive Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and General Counsel for MICROS Systems. "Working with Aether, we will be able to offer customers the innovative, functional products they have come to expect from MICROS."
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