Palm Releases Wireless Database Server

Palm, Inc.has released the Wireless Database Access Server (WDBAS) which allows developers in IT departments to create wireless applications that access corporate databases in real time. It lets developers use Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) -- such as AppForge and Metrowerks' CodeWarrior -- to develop mobile applications that can access corporate data wirelessly. This app will help Palm k\hold onto its position as the preferred handheld platform in the enterprise.

Most applications store data on the handheld which gets updated only during HotSyncs. This means the user doesn't always have the most up-to-date information. A wireless browser application lets the user have up-to-date information only if the handheld is in the coverage area. WDBAS lets developers build applications that can access previously stored data while offline, and also do real-time wireless data access.

This is Palm's first "open" handheld software that can support development of a single application that can be deployed to a Palm OS or a Microsoft Pocket PC device.

Palm is releasing WDBAS developer seats now, and will be make a WDBAS Enterprise Edition available later this year. The Enterprise Edition will include deployment licenses and additional advanced features.

It is available now in the US from two sources. Metrowerks has bundled it with CodeWarrior Enterprise Edition CD for the Palm OS platform. AppForge has it available for use with Visual Basic.

"Until now many enterprises were apprehensive that deploying their database applications wirelessly would take skills and money they didn't have," said Jonathan Oakes, director of Enterprise Strategy at Palm. "Palm wants to extend the same ease of use that has made Palm so successful in the handheld industry into the mobile enterprise applications space."

A recent Jupiter Research's study asked nearly 400 executives across a range of industries about their mobile application development plans. It found that 83% of the respondents said their companies plan to support Palm Powered devices for mobile applications; this number is nearly double that of Pocket PC devices.

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