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November 3, 2005

BT: universal access

BT recently announced the availability of MobileXpress, an end-to-end managed service that provides access to organization networks for remote users, allowing them to securely access enterprise applications from 150 countries. While this is an area of vast commercial potential, however, BT is not the only company to realize this, and the UK telecoms titan could face some tough competition.

By CBR Staff Writer

BT has launched a secure corporate remote access service.

MobileXpress combines a number of existing remote-working service offerings provided by BT into one single solution, enabling users to gain connectivity through an easy-to-use client interface and, depending on location, to exploit a number of different access technologies, such as Wi-Fi hotspots, in-flight wireless, and 3G mobile services, complemented by the availability of fixed-line broadband and dial-up access.

With the number of remote office locations and mobile workers continuing to increase, being able to provide remote access to the enterprise network from any location is fast becoming a prerequisite of doing business.

BT is not alone in realizing that remote users require the ability to easily, securely, and seamlessly connect to enterprise systems using the best, be that cheapest or quickest, communication mechanism available. Other vendors offering a similar enterprise-grade service include iPass, Fiberlink, and Orange.

This means BT’s offering could face some tough competition. However, the company’s confidence in MobileXpress is evidenced by comments made by the vice president of global products for BT Global Services, Aaron McCormack. In a release relating to the product’s launch, Mr McCormack stated that he sees MobileXpress as integral to BT’s foray into digitally networked mobility solutions, which themselves represent an important market in today’s global economy.

Both Mr McCormack and BT Infonet’s vice president of communications solutions, Luke Dallafior, talked up the product’s ease-of-use, while Mr Dallafior also pointed out factors such as flexibility and security. While it is no surprise to hear company representatives crowing about a product’s benefits, flexibility, security and simplicity will all key to BT gaining a competitive edge in the corporate remote access market.

When selecting a remote access solution other key components to take into consideration include total cost of ownership, the range of device types, and management overheads.

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Source: OpinionWire by Butler Group (www.butlergroup.com)

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