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Yet Another Partner For Microsoft
Posted: 14-Dec-1999 [Source: Wireless World]

[Wireless World writes its perspectives on last week's Ericsson-Microsoft joint venture announcement.]

By Brad Smith -- "Marriages aren't always made in heaven. A year ago there was talk about the 'War of the Microbrowsers for handsets, pitting Microsoft Corp.'s technology against the Wireless Application Protocol for accessing the Internet with wireless devices. Well, last week the two protagonists tied the knot in a ceremony performed by Swedish wireless giant Ericsson.

Microsoft and Ericsson agreed to form a new company based in Sweden to deliver mobile e-mail solutions to wireless carriers. One product of the relationship will put Microsoft's new Mobile Explorer microbrowser in Ericsson handsets, incorporating the WAP microbrowser. Microsoft's Windows CE operating system for handheld devices is not part of the partnership.

The agreement underscores Microsoft's octopus-like reach into the world of mobile computing and Web access; it has successfully wooed numerous other partners to help achieve its vision.

The marriage with Ericsson raises questions about the Swedish handset maker's earlier vows to Symbian Ltd. Ericsson created Symbian 18 months ago along with fellow handset manufacturers Nokia, Motorola and Matushita Communications Industrial Co. and British computing company Psion Ltd. to foster the use of the Psion EPOC operating system in mobile devices."

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