Esemde Wireless Messaging, PCS ONE Announce Agreement to Advance Short Messaging Services - SMS - Access

Middleware Technology Company's SMS Center Makes It First Virtual SMS Service Provider in U.S.

Esemde Wireless Messaging and PCS ONE today announced a first-of-its-kind alliance that opens the door for wireless carriers to accelerate U.S. business customers' access to sophisticated Short Messaging Services (SMS) data applications. Under the agreement, Esemde, a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) for data services will incorporate its advanced SMS middleware technology into the Pennsylvania-based carrier's wireless network.

Esemde, a recent graduate of the Cenetec LLC technology accelerator program, will market a number of SMS vertical applications, such as telemetry (remote machine monitoring), telematics (online mobile services-vehicle tracking and fleet management), as well as niche services for enterprise use to the wireless carrier's customers, according to Esemde President Stephen Dye. The middleware Short Message Service Center (SMSC) developed by Esemde creates a bridge between carriers and application service providers. It allows SMS and General Packet Radio Services (GPRS) to be seamlessly deployed across the multiple wireless standards existing in the U.S. and Canada. Widely adopted in Europe, growth of wireless SMS services in North America has been hampered by the use of competing technologies.

"This agreement makes Esemde the first virtual service provider for SMS in the United States," said Dye. "It demonstrates the viability of Esemde's approach -- allowing carriers to tap the SMS market as a new revenue base without having to build their own infrastructure or divert resources from their core voice business," Dye said.

For PCS ONE, the agreement is a way to expand its business customer base in new directions, and is another step in its ability to offer customers some of the most advanced wireless services available. "PCS ONE was the first company in central Pennsylvania to offer its customers 100 percent digital wireless communication, and our strategic alliance with Esemde helps us maintain that leadership position," said Robert Quaranta, president of PCS ONE, a joint venture between local provider D&E Communications, Inc., and VoiceStream Wireless, the largest GSM carrier in North America.

Analysts project the global market for infrastructure to support and manage wireless data applications and services will reach $25 to $30 billion by 2005. In Europe, where 13 billion SMS messages were transmitted in the month of April, this market represents about 12 percent of the average carrier's income. By resolving compatibility issues, Esemde's technology is well positioned to help grow SMS use in North America.

"Esemde enables carriers to capitalize on their investment in current networks as they plan for third generation (3G) wireless technology," said Dye. Additionally, greater use of SMS services through technologies such as Esemde's will help drive acceptance and demand for a 3G market."

The Esemde solution enables wireless carriers to easily offer businesses customized wireless data messaging applications that move well beyond basic voice and Internet content delivery such as stock quotes and sports scores. Esemde's platform can be employed by wireless carriers to offer new data applications including monitoring, diagnostics, notification, and repair of field devices such as utility meters and medical equipment, as well as vehicle command and control, Dye noted.

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