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iPhone-as-business-tool products proliferate at Macworld Expo

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Software products for the iPhone were present in force at Macworld Expo this week, and it wasn't dominated by games. Business and enterprise tools for the iPhone were being demonstrated throughout San Francisco's Moscone Center.

Kerio Technologies' Kerio MailServer, a cross-platform groupware server, has seen growth since it added ActiveSynch for iPhone support last year. The company said that some of its customers have hundreds of iPhone users connecting to Kerio MailServer for mobile email, calendaring, and contacts.

"One-third of our customer base in North America is using the iPhone. People are using it as a business phone," said Dusan Vitek, vice president of Worldwide Marketing. "Features like zooming [of email attachments] are important for business users."

The current version of the server is Kerio MailServer 6.6, which is available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.

Check Point showed its iPhone VPN (virtual private network) client for the Check Point VPN-1 appliance. The iPhone supports uses the iPhone's embedded L2TP client to provide IPsec VPN access.

CallWave, Inc., demonstrated iPhone connectivity with FUZE, the company's conferencing service, now in beta. Similar to WebEx, except it is Flash-based, FUZE can provide synchronized high-definition video to users of iPhones, Macs, and PCs. iPhone users can view the screens of computer users and receive conference invitations. Support for Windows Mobile is also planned.

CallWave has another product, WebMessenger Mobile, which extends Microsoft's Office Communications Server (OCS) to iPhones. WebMessenger Mobile for the iPhone is available from the Apple App Store.

Ilium Software makes a product called eWallet, which securely stores and manages passwords and other personal information in a single file iPhone and iPod Touch. The file, secured with 256-bit AES encryption, can contain passwords for computer and online accounts, as well as credit card numbers, PIN Numbers, and other confidential data. eWallet on an iPhone can sync with the Windows version. A Mac version is planned.

We-Envision announced an iPhone app called myCard, which transmits a users business card to others over WiFi. The software is available for a buck (US $1) at the App Store.

Macworld Expo wasn't strickly business for iPhones, though. Smule software demonstrated Ocarina, software that turns your iPhone into a flute when you blow on the microphone.

Current news on the MacWindows home page

Citrix GoToMeeting: Free Trial
Now, completely cross-platform. New in this version: Mac users can now host meetings, as well as attend planned or impromptu online events just as easily as PC users. Free VoIP and audio conferencing for both Mac and PC.

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