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Siemens strikes OEM agreement to License OpenScape technology to IBM

Siemens Enterprise Communications announced an OEM agreement that will allow IBM to license elements of Siemens' OpenScape open unified communications capabilities to enhance the IBM Lotus "Unified Telephony" offering currently planned by IBM as part of the expanded Lotus Sametime product family.

The deal combines the two companies' strengths in providing converged voice, data and video communications as well as collaboration solutions for enterprises of all sizes around the world.

"IBM chose Siemens OpenScape technology because of its interoperability with multiple PBX systems and track record of innovation and vision in this field," said Bruce Morse, vice president, unified communication and collaboration, IBM. "Our companies share the goal of developing extensible unified communications solutions that are based on open standards and integrate seamlessly into business processes."

Under the agreement, IBM will license elements of OpenScape software and integrate them within IBM Lotus Sametime "Unified Telephony" software, the recently announced addition to IBM's industry leading unified communications and collaboration strategy. By incorporating OpenScape technology, Lotus software users will benefit from easy to use communications tools within the applications they already use regardless of their back-end telephony systems.

Another important enterprise IT benefit is that incorporating OpenScape technology into the Lotus Sametime "Unified Telephony" offering will enable Lotus customers to decouple their unified communications investments from their PBX infrastructure. This makes a single, consistent communications image across a heterogeneous telephony environment possible. As a result, IT departments will no longer need to manage a range of varied, vendor-dependent approaches to unified communications. Furthermore, they can make application integration decisions based on business needs, not PBX capabilities.

"In today's global and fast-paced economy, companies need more responsive and smarter ways of communicating, making decisions, and eliminating delays," said Jonathan B. Spira, CEO and chief analyst at Basex, one of the leading knowledge economy research firms.

"Integrating the Siemens OpenScape technology into the Lotus Sametime 'Unified Telephony' product will simplify the ability to build true Collaborative Business Environments and communicate in real-time across mixed PBX systems, helping increase knowledge worker productivity."

Siemens' OpenScape Unified Communications suite is built on Siemens OpenSOA architecture, and based on Siemens' hallmark open communications model. This is an IT-based communications paradigm characterised by unified communications, fixed-mobile convenience, business process integration, business continuity and integrity, OpenSOA service delivery and a rich user experience.

As the world's largest provider of middleware software and IT services, IBM's decision to license elements of OpenScape and incorporate them within the Lotus Sametime "Unified Telephony" product supports Siemens' Open Communications model and showcases how SOA-based solutions work well together.

"IBM's decision to incorporate elements of OpenScape into the Lotus Sametime 'Unified Telephony' product will open a whole new realm of possibilities for enterprises to incorporate real-time communications into a much wider range of business processes and to gain greater responsiveness and a sharper competitive edge," said Thomas Zimmermann, Chief Operating Officer, Siemens Enterprise Communications. "Given the size of its Lotus software user base worldwide, this could foster a drive across multiple industries to streamline communications, lower costs, and increase profitability."

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.