The present pace of workflow will compel mobile workers to carry technologies that offer instant voice response and at least hourly e-mail response by the year 2004. For you, this means that an already competitive marketplace will become even more so - service providers who can provide the services to support this "always connected" workforce will prevail, while those that don't may fail. Because of many ways in which it has surpassed technologies that have preceded it, including immediacy and functionality, GPRS has become a necessary technology to consider when implementing your mobile wireless infrastructure. GPRS provides your mobile network users with a high-speed packet data service that enables network users to access network resources and Internet applications without the tether of a desktop dial-up connection - resulting in a competitive differentiator for service providers.
1] Enterprise server
The Always On Server is designed to be deployed on a Microsoft Windows server situated on a corporate network. The server uses MAPI (Message Application Programming Interface) and CDO (Collaboration Data Objects) to monitor users' Microsoft Exchange mailboxes. When new mail arrives in an inbox, the Always On server stores a reference to the email until their pocket PC based PDA picks it up. When the user connects, the server retrieves the message, removes all unnecessary formatting, compresses, encrypts (using 128 bit triple DES), and pushes it to the PDA.
The Always On server is designed to be run by the IT department and, so includes features for administrators to tailor the service to individual users' needs - eg the ability to add and remove accounts, and providing control over attributes like message truncation levels on a global and individual basis.
2] Client for PDA / Smart Devices
Written in C/C++, the PDA client resides on the user's device, maintaining a connection to the Always On Server using UDP/IP over GPRS, GSM or WiFi. If mail destined for the PDA client is waiting on the Always On server, and a data connection is available, it decrypts, decompresses and presents the mail message to the user in the Pocket Inbox.
The client must be able to connect to the public internet (or wherever the Always On Server resides). This connection is made via an inbuilt GPRS module, or Bluetooth, infrared or cable, to a device capable of GPRS, GSM or WiFi connectivity.
In addition to delivering email, the software uses status messages to communicate between the PDA and the Always On Server to update the status of email messages (eg read, unread, deleted, or sent) so the PDA and office based email account always present the same view of a user's inbox.
GPRS Infrastructure Component Solution assists in the implementation of GPRS technology by:
- Providing subscribers with faster access and increased functionality to wireless devices
- Increasing subscriber loyalty by offering new, leading-edge services
- Providing a gateway between the GPRS network and Public Data Networks
- Enabling the connection to other GPRS networks to facilitate GPRS roaming
- Providing the type of data capabilities planned for "third generation" cellular networks such as UMTS and 3G, years ahead of their competition.