January 8, 2002
Avanade Inc., the world's premier technology integrator for Microsoft solutions in the enterprise, today announced the availability of ACA Mobile, part of the family of Avanade Connected Architectures. ACA Mobile is a solution development accelerator for mobile and embedded systems applications based on Microsoft Windows CE .NET.
Businesses face a gap between the promise of mobile business applications and the reality of incomplete solutions that fail to adequately address problems of real-time, remote communication, such as sending and receiving information from a field sales visit or maintenance call, or the status of a manufacturing process.
ACA Mobile will help companies cost-effectively build mobile applications that take advantage of the Windows CE .NET operating system across a range of mobile and embedded devices. Applications that leverage ACA Mobile can achieve reliable IP-based communication, utilize instant messaging technology, be available online or offline, and incorporate security enhancements available with the architecture. ACA Mobile also includes a device management solution that uses the Microsoft Management Console and Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI).
"The enterprise market demands mobile solutions that increase profitability and flexibility," said Scott Horn, director of marketing for the Embedded and Appliance Platforms Group at Microsoft Corp. "By extending the rich wireless technologies implemented in Windows CE .NET using Avanade's ACA Mobile asset, enterprises can develop scalable, cost-effective mobile and embedded systems applications more quickly."
ACA Mobile uses industry standards such as SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) to provide pre-coded, tested application infrastructure services. ACA Mobile helps enterprises reduce mobile application development time from a matter of months to weeks, lowers the cost, and minimizes risk that often accompanies an untested application.
"ACA Mobile will help companies developing mobile applications arrive at the best, most reliable solution more quickly. Avanade's translation of intellectual assets into `accelerators' such as ACA Mobile differentiates us and, ultimately, benefits our customers," said Mitch Hill, Avanade CEO. "In addition, Avanade's deep understanding of Microsoft technology as a whole means we can more rapidly and securely integrate a mobile solution into a customer's environment and help extend existing systems."
ACA Mobile will also serve as the underpinning of an Accenture business solution to significantly lower the cost and improve the efficiency of field operations for companies with large mobile sales or service forces. The solution, called Field Force Enablement, gives mobile employees access to a suite of Web-based, mission-critical business applications that are tightly integrated with the company's existing enterprise systems, but that are inexpensive, fast, and effective to use from an intermittently connected wireless device.
Avanade's work with OmniaExpress, the logistics arm of the Italian Railways Group, F.S. Group S.p.A, is testimony to its ability to develop leading-edge, robust mobile solutions for its customers. Avanade architected and implemented an integrated mobile architecture for OmniaExpress, which supports carriers' mobile access to a voice portal for updating the status of deliveries. Avanade used the Web Telephony Engine (WTE), Internet Information Server, and Windows 2000 Advanced Server to build a system that allows delivery updates to be made by telephone or cell phone using a voice-based interface, or by using a Web interface, both of which are linked with a central database system.
"We were impressed by Avanade's comprehensive set of development standards and reference applications its developers had already assembled. These pre-built tools, combined with a deep understanding of the Microsoft enterprise platform, convinced us Avanade was best suited to help OmniaExpress develop our solution," said Riccardo Brunelli, ICT Manager, OmniaExpress.
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