Gregory Alan Bolcer (gbolcer@endeavors.org)
Fri, 22 Jan 1999 11:44:53 -0800

I just had the following protocol brought to my attention. It appears to be very
interesting. WAP stands for Wireless Application Protocol and looks to be supported
by the top 7 major vendors of Wireless eqiupment. [1][2]

One of the companies sees WAP as a unified messaging solution (their words below).
It always cracks me up the examples they give for why people would want
'on the go' wireless capabilities, and it always has to do with getting stock quotes.
The list of companies, Nokia, Ericsson, and Motorola along are impressive. They also
have the apparent buy-in from HP and Oracle. When I say buy-in, I mean it literally.
Minimum corporate participation looks to be $27k. So much for open protocols.
Conspicuously missing are Sony, Sun, and Philips, who recently seem to be more interested
in the networked entertainment devices market. [3] Have you seen some of the stock
lately? They have high entertainment value.

So, you put wireless applications together with network connected entertainment devices,
what do you need now? Well, you need 3Com and Microsoft to try and break in late into the
voice, data, and video over IP market to try and unseat Cisco. [4]


[1] http://www.mobiledata.hughsym.co.uk/news/MDQ4/WAP.htm [see below]
[2] http://www.wapforum.org/
[3] http://www.nytimes.com/library/tech/99/01/biztech/articles/19alliance.html
[4] http://www.mercurycenter.com/premium/business/docs/3com19.htm


Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and Toshiba Are Among Seven New Members Adopting WAP Standard

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. - (January 20, 1999) - The Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) Forum
(www.wapforum.org) today announced that seven international technology companies have
joined as members, further demonstrating the industry's support of the wireless
application protocol standard for Internet communications on wireless devices. New
members include computer industry leaders Hewlett-Packard Company, Oracle Corporation and
Toshiba Corporation, as well as telecom innovators Bussan Systems Integration Company,
Tokyo Digital Phone, Glenayre Technologies Inc. and One 2 One. These companies joined the
71 other WAP Forum members at the Forum's meeting held last month in Kyoto, Japan, to
specify industry-wide plans for releasing WAP-enabled services and applications during

The Forum also announced that its next meeting will be held Feb. 1-5 in Fort Worth, Texas,
where the WAP roadmap for 1999 and beyond will be unveiled. Non-members can sign up to
attend an open session and social event during the Fort Worth meeting at
www.wapforum.org/meetings/nonmembers-ftworth.html. The week following the Fort Worth
meeting, various WAP Forum members will demonstrate their support of the WAP standard in
their booths at WIRELESS '99, the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association's
(CTIA) 14th annual convention and exposition in New Orleans, Louisiana.

"Gaining the support from computer industry leaders such as HP, Oracle and Toshiba and
receiving key endorsements from innovative companies such as Bussan, Tokyo Digital Phone,
Glenayre and One 2 One have strengthened the momentum behind the WAP specification," said
Chuck Parrish, WAP Forum board chairman and executive vice president of Unwired Planet,
Inc., a founding Forum member. "With the Forum's membership at 78 and growing, the
industry has cast its vote for WAP as the single, de-facto standard for accessing the
Internet - anytime, anywhere - on all wireless networks and devices."
Opened to general membership in January 1998, the WAP Forum today has widespread
representation and support from all sectors of the telecommunications industry, including
the leading infrastructure manufacturers, handset manufacturers, wireless network
operators and software providers. With active industry participation, the Forum has
delivered Wireless Application Protocol V1.0, a set of standard protocols designed to run
on top of the Internet IP protocol and other wireless network bearers. Announced in April
1998, this vendor-neutral and network-independent open specification is the unified
worldwide standard for providing Internet communications and advanced telephony services
on digital mobile phones, pagers, personal digital assistants and other wireless

"WAP V1.0 is a major step in building the wireless Internet, where people-on-the-go can
access the Internet through their wireless devices to get information such as e-mails,
news headlines, stock reports, map directions and sports scores when they need it and
where they need," added Parrish. "The WAP Forum has accomplished a lot in just one year,
but we still have much work to do. As new handset technologies, network protocols and
Internet standards are developed, the Forum will take an active role in shaping them for
compatibility with the wireless market."

WAP provides a single industry-standard mechanism for wireless application
interoperability and a standard XML-compliant markup language called WML (Wireless Markup
Language). WML, which is being implemented industry-wide, will accelerate market growth
by providing a clear path for application developers. WML's user-interface components map
well onto existing mobile phone interfaces, capitalizing on the extremely large market
penetration of mobile devices. People who use mobile phones today will immediately be
able to use WAP-enabled phones and services without re-education.

New Members Support WAP Standard

"HP supports the WAP Forum's fast-paced, multi-vendor approach to delivering Internet
access to mobile phone users," said Bernard Guidon, vice president and general manager of
HP's Communications Industry Business Unit. "Integrating WAP's capabilities with HP's
OpenCall telecom-grade service development platforms will foster new market opportunities
for our customers, enabling them to introduce timely and innovative applications that
combine data and voice access from mobile phones."
"Oracle views the Wireless Access Protocol as an extension to Internet computing," said
Andy Felong, vice president of the Internet Applications Division at Oracle Corporation.
"We have already delivered Oracle Internet Messaging with wireless Unified Messaging, and
have prototyped TTML and HDML solutions to support mobile computing on cellular phones.
The next step is to standardize this capability, and WAP provides an ideal solution."

"Glenayre sees a tremendous opportunity in the convergence of fixed and wireless
networks," said Sonny Bettis, vice president of engineering for Glenayre Electronics ING
Division. "To capitalize on this convergence, we intend to roll out our Unified Messaging
Solution (UMS) to wireless carriers and their subscribers in 1999. An important aspect of
the UMS product is the support of the WAP standard for enhanced data and e-mail messaging
- anytime, anywhere, anyway. Glenayre joined the WAP Forum because it provides us with
both the vendor and customer perspective for unified messaging to the end device."

"Having pioneered personal communications networks, One 2 One views WAP as a key
technology for maintaining its high levels of service innovation into the era of personal,
mobile multimedia," said Professor Peter Ramsdale, chief engineer at One 2 One.