A dozen business partners have signed up to support IBM's Workplace Client Technology, which was rolled out earlier this week.
The Workplace Client is a rich client platform designed to ease management of and access to a variety of applications.
The partnerships will give independent software vendors a common set of tools and a common programming model for developing and deploying applications to a variety of devices, according to IBM officials.
"The server managed client [initiative] is taking a central management approach to a wide range of devices such as mobile phones, PDAs, laptops and tablet PCs," said Steve Steigmeyer, manager of embedded software for IBM pervasive computing. "We've implemented a set of mobile middleware in devices so you can do services on demand."
The extension of Workplace to IBM business partners will deliver increased manageability, security and a lower cost of ownership for a wider ranger of software, hardware and business applications.
IBM's Java-based Workplace Client push includes Lotus tools such as messaging, document management and collaboration; server-based management tools; and a Micro Edition that extends middleware to mobile devices.
One of the biggest benefits for partners is that they can use their J2EE programming skills for developing to small devices, Steigmeyer said. Typically programmers would have to use J2ME, which requires a different set of skills.
The partners that have signed on include Adobe Systems, Binary Tree, Blue Martini Software, Cisco Systems, Colligo Networks, e-office, Genius Inside, Intellisync, PalmOne, PeopleSoft, PSC Group, PureEdge Solutions, Relavis, Research In Motion, Siebel Systems, Symbol Technologies, Synchrony and Wily Technology.
Cathleen Moore writes for InfoWorld