Siemens is collaborating with Microsoft to integrate telephony-based services into real-time communications applications.
The company, better known for its enterprise and carrier network equipment, is developing a software platform that adds fixed-line telephony, mobile and wireless capabilities to collaboration-driven applications supported by Microsoft's RTC (real-time communications) Server 2003 software.
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Siemens' OpenScape software platform will sit on top of Microsoft's real-time server software running on Windows Server 2003 technology, said Bernd Kuhlin, president of the enterprise networks unit at Siemens.
The OpenScape system will support real-time voice, video and wireless communications, messaging services such as e-mail, voicemail and SMS (Short Message Service) and a range of calendaring and collaboration applications from web conferencing and whiteboarding to document sharing.
A beta version of OpenScape is expected later this year, shortly after Microsoft has launched its new real-time communications server product.
"We're really coming from different sides of the market, Microsoft on the server side, Siemens on the telephony side," said Andrew Sinclair, group manager of the real-time collaboration group at Microsoft.
"Our collaboration with Siemens is really about time to market, and Siemens is definitely moving quickly."
John Blau writes for IDG News Service