Ahead of the 3GSM World Congress in Cannes, Hewlett-Packard Co. on Wednesday unveiled a multi-faceted strategy that it said will personalize and bring greater flexibility to mobile computing.

It’s a move that didn’t come as a surprise

to one telecom analyst, who said companies like HP are trying to move up the value chain and take the ISO model one step further.

“”Before they were strictly focused on infrastructure and transport. Now they’re trying to move up into systems and applications, and . . . that’s both wired and multi types of wireless,”” explained Roberta Fox, president and senior partner of Fox Group Consulting in Markham, Ont.

One of the announcements HP made was centred around improvements in the HP mobile Service Delivery Platform (mSDP), which encompasses software and tools, partner solutions, carrier-grade hardware and consulting and integrations services.

Upgrades to the mSDP system will touch on design, development, deployment and capacity growth, and affect voice-based, data-based and multimedia services, said Jean-Réné Bouvier, vice-president and general manager of HP’s open call business unit in Grenoble, France.

“”In this platform, our use of standards and modular components allows us to quickly tailor the platform of the overall architecture to specific-operator needs and also lower their risks without increasing their cost.””

The new functionality includes a pre-integrated platform core that links all mSDP components, pre-integrated adaptors for network management, location services and billing solutions, digital rights management, enhanced security controls and an improved abilty to create Web services, said Bouvier.

HP will also make changes to its Integrated Services Management platform (ISM), which deals with business and operations support systems (BSS and OSS), including business consulting and and integration, HP OpenView and partner software, and a new generation OSS framework that streamlines several back-office systems.

HP’s Content Mediation and Charging (CMC) solution, a new ISM application, addresses challenges telecom operators face billing for pre-paid and post-paid customers of complex services, content and rich media, explained Phil McKinney, chief technology officer of the network and service provider solutions team at HP in Palo Alto, Calif.

HP updated its fraud management system, SMS 9.0, to make it fully aware of these next-generation services and therefore reduce its exposure to fraud, added McKinney.

HP and Ericsson, meanwhile, teamed to offer unified communications services.The partnership will bring about “”a single platform, single point of contact, and the ability to integrate all those communications into one infrastructure,”” said McKinney.

Fox predicted an interesting union between Ericsson, which has a history of being strong in communications products, and HP, which has done well in PC-based enterprise products. “”That’s as significant as the Sony and Ericsson alliance,”” she said, referring to 2002’s merger of the two ocompanies’ mobile phone divisions. So does that mean that there’s going to be a new version of an iPaq that has super-duper communications? Watch to see what happens in the future.””

HP also debuted new mobility support services for wireless LANs to make it easier for companies to design, build, manage, own and maintain wireless LAN infrastructures, added McKinney. This will also include support for companies experiencing technical problems and mobile application challenges.

HP, which was a strong player in the areas of network management and systems management tools, is smart to apply the same technology to the carrier marketplace, said Fox. “”The telcos are trying to do new services faster (and) with less operational cost. Having a consolidated view is good for the customers, it’s good for the carriers and it’s good for HP.””

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