First Coffee for September 6, 2005

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
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First Coffee for September 6, 2005

By David Sims

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Frank Sinatra’s album In The Wee Small Hours:

It’s a mixed blessing when your two favorite tennis players go head-to-head in the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam, but First CoffeeSM will be cheering for Andre Agassi to just barely defeat James Blake in the most thrilling five-set quarterfinal match in U.S. Open history tomorrow. His son Blake will be, understandably, cheering for the opposition.

Optaros Inc. is a venture capital-funded consulting and systems integration firm that concentrates on helping large enterprises get into open source software and global sourcing. They’ve currently got offices in Boston and Geneva, and are announcing the opening of a Zurich office.

Seeing an opportunity for an expansion of the European market, Optaros officials say the Zurich office will concentrate on providing financial services and telecommunications companies with consulting and information system development services.

Bruno von Rotz, who becomes an Optaros vice president and market lead for Switzerland said his “first priority” is to establish the Optaros value proposition in the market” to European firms.

Optaros uses Romania for much of its “near shore” operations.

Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd. is announcing the launch of IRISPASS-M this morning, billing it “the next generation iris recognition camera with fully automated dual iris capture.”

“Dual iris capture…” achieving an almost surreal poetry in a simple press release. Let’s put on some John Cage, shall we?

IRISPASS-M will conform to both BioAPI the international standard for interfacing to biometric devices, and PrivateID, the iris recognition interoperability protocol defined by Iridian Technologies, Inc. Sales start today in the Japanese, North American and European markets with initial shipments due in December 2005.

Iris-recognition technology is supposed to be less intrusive than retina scans, which often require infrared rays or bright light to get an accurate reading, according to a good CNN primer on the subject: “Scientists also say a person’s retina can change with age, while an iris remains intact. And no two iris blueprints are mathematically alike, even between identical twins and triplets.”

So why do you need one? Ah, of course: “With the threat of terrorism and identity theft on the rise, demand for biometric technologies at airports and offices has been increasing,” company officials claim. Norikazu Shimizu, President of Systems Hardware Company at Oki Electric recommends embedding IRISPASS-M into self-service kiosks and other automated equipment.

Sorry, Frank, as well-loved as your music is here at First CoffeeSM it’s just not cutting it this morning, so you’re being replaced with a real “triple play” – the Rolling StonesBeggar’s Banquet, Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street.

There, that’s better. Must get Let It Bleed again some day.

Intrado Inc. is announcing a joint venture with PDAger (XieJin) Technology Development Co., Ltd., a mobile provider which grants Intrado (XieAn) Technology (China) Co. Ltd, a business license to operate in China. Headquartered in Beijing, the company will develop enhanced emergency communications solutions for public safety and disaster management agencies in China, according to company officials.

Intrado and PDAger announced plans for the joint venture on June 30, 2005, and have since completed all of the Chinese government’s requirements for issuance of a business license as a technologically advanced company registered in the Zhongguancun (bet that comes up on spell check) National Science-Tech Park in Beijing.

Advanced Info Service Plc is announcing plans to offer BlackBerry service in Thailand.

Mr. Somchai Lertsutiwong, Vice President-Wireless Service Business of Advanced Info Service Public Company Limited said AIS plans to launch BlackBerry to corporate customers by the end of this year.

True Corporation Plc is also announcing plans this morning to launch BlackBerry in Thailand through its TA Orange subsidiary.

“Are you sure this is the place?”

“Yeah, see the name here – ‘Madame Sosostris, Famous Clair… uh, Business Technology Forecasting.’”

“If you say so. Nice bead curtain door, my girlfriend in college had one like this.”

“Ah, welcome, I can tell you are here for a business technology forecast. Please, be seated, gentlemen. Guinevere will get you some fresh mistletoe tea, she just put the cauldron on. You are here for…”

“Mobile messaging.”

“SMS, the cheapest, quickest, easiest form of peer-to-peer mobile communication ever known. Still growing in all regions. Wise choice, gentlemen, wise.”

“Actually we’re with an MMS concern.”

“I… ah, yes. [Furrowed brow, averts glance.] Well in that case – thank you Guinevere, dear, on the Ottoman is fine. Please understand, gentlemen, MMS is not a failure, far from it, and we don’t need the crystal ball for this. A new report from Portio Research forecasts that MMS will generate revenues of $50 billion by 2010.”

“Toldja, Ken.”

“Of course, other mobile messaging technologies will ascend. Mobile Instant Messaging volumes in the U.S. are expected to pass SMS by 2009 or 2010.”

“MIM? Hailfire Earl, isn’t that what you got us out – ”

“SMS, huh? Does it say why?”

“Why yes, gentlemen, it will remain the most widely used messaging format for some years to come, with revenues estimated at $50 billion by 2010, driven by almost 2.38
trillion messages. It’s all in the report, ‘Mobile Messaging Futures 2005 – 2010.’”

“Must be some report.”

“It outlines progress, albeit slower, for other mobile messaging technologies, especially mobile e-mail and instant messaging amid continued strong worldwide subscriber growth.”

“So you’re saying MMS isn’t really where it’s at?”

“Since its launch in 2002, MMS has failed to assume the SMS mantle, hampered by interoperability issues and low handset penetration. When MMS becomes cheap, simple and compelling, traffic will grow and revenue will follow. But of course, you don’t need a fortune teller to know that, do you?”

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