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WAP makes U.S. debut at Comdex Fall '99
Posted: 24-Nov-1999 [Source: WAPsight]

[WAP Enabled Phones may be on the streets in Europe already, but in the U.S. the products are just now starting to emerge. WAP featured prominently this year at the Comdex Fall '99. ]

By Robert Whitinger, Las Vegas, Nevada USA -- WAP Enabled Phones may be on the streets in Europe already, but in the U.S. the products are just now starting to emerge. WAP featured prominently this year at the Comdex Fall '99. Both Nokia and Ericsson presented strong showings as equipment makers and system suppliers and a variety of applications providers were there to demonstrate their WAP offerings.

Phones - Although the world's first WAP Enabled phone, the dual band GSM-900 and GSM-1800 Nokia 7110 , has been available in Europe since late September, the stateside users must wait a bit longer. The first GSM-1900 7100 series model will appear on the American market "first half of 2000" according to Nokia. Meanwhile over at the Ericsson booth, the compact R280 was demonstrated. This model will be interesting because of its small size and its use of a fast "dictionary lookup" technique for data entry. Available now as a browser phone for CDPD, a dual band GSM-900/1900 WAP version is coming "first half of 2000" according to Michael Frink, R280 Project Manager." The slightly larger R380 model (Europe introduction in March 2000, according to Ericsson's Samuel Mason) integrates PDA functionality into its larger display (see sidebar photo).

Systems - Nokia announced the December availability of their WAP Server 1.0, following a successful beta campaign. Developers wanting a head start will be offered downloadable trial versions of the Nokia WAP Server and a new update of their companion Nokia WAP Toolkit. According to Timo Miettinen, the December release will support the NT platform.

Developer's Tools - Macromedia went live on WAP, in cooperation with Nokia, demonstrating their WAP compliant extensions to their Dreamweaver 3 product which includes a built in Nokia 7100 series simulator. Developers and content providers will be interested in looking at Dreamweaver for rapid deployment of WAP targeted content using WML (wireless markup language). Product launch is targeted for February according to Nokia's Claus Pederson.

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