i-mate does software double

Handheld vendor i-mate, which specialises in producing PDA and smartphone devices for Microsoft’s Windows Mobile operating system, has itself moved into the software arena with the announcement of its i-mate ‘Suite’ solution for enterprise customers and new ‘Play-In ~ Play-Out’ titles for gamers

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By  Matthew Wade Published  April 17, 2006

Handheld vendor i-mate, which specialises in producing PDA and smartphone devices for Microsoft’s Windows Mobile operating system, has itself moved into the software arena with the announcement of its i-mate ‘Suite’ solution for enterprise customers and new ‘Play-In ~ Play-Out’ titles for gamers The firm’s ‘Suite’ is, it claims, a complete enterprise mobility solution. Designed to enable the simple company-wide management, security and backup of mobile devices such as PDAs and smartphones, this release allows enterprises to equip staff with familiar Windows Mobile devices as a means of extending corporate networks beyond the office. Suite comprises three modules in total: i-mate Control; 1-View for the enterprise, and Backup. Using these, business users are able to browse files on home or office PCs from anywhere, share data between specified group members, extend their corporate network into the field, access a PC or other device from their handset, and vice versa, and even remotely erase data if a device is ever lost or stolen. Meanwhile, the firm’s new mobile game titles let players play an interactive game from their desktop PC, pause it and then switch to their mobile and continue the fun (this the moniker ‘Play-In ~ Play-Out’). The games included – which have two-mode availability: standalone and online multiplayer – are six of I-mate’s current titles that have been enhanced for this multi-location use. They include: Dominoes, Texas Hold’em Poker, Pool, Snooker, Blackjack and Craps. These programs are available from www.clubimate.com. “i-mate has established itself very quickly as a leader in the mobility space,” commented the firm’s founder and CEO, Jim Morrison. “Our deep understanding of the Microsoft Windows Mobile platform puts us in a perfect position to develop software that fully utilises the functionality and capability of i-mate mobile devices. No other company currently has the capability to offer these kinds of solutions in this way.” At the launch of its programs today, i-mate quoted a recent report by analyst house Nomura, which claims that Morrison’s strategy is, “spot-on for delivering what corporations require from mobility.” The report states: “To date only i-mate with Microsoft has decided to enter the market for offering enterprise grade mobile solutions, and as a result we expect that in 2006, the bulk of Microsoft mobile-enabled devices will be shipped by i-mate.” i-mate’s new games and Suite will be available from May 1. Games cost US $11.99 each for Club i-mate members and $19.95 for non-members. Suite meanwhile costs $9.99 per month for an individual user (with a minimum 12-month subscription) and $60 per month for an enterprise customer with a minimum of 100 users.

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