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Technology / AI and automation


Spyglass Inc, the internet company which now likes to style itself as a smart device software specialist, is hoping for a much needed boost in revenues with the long awaited commercial release of Prism 1.0, its server-based software for converting web content into a usable form for mobile communication products. The Naperville, Illinois-based company received a further shot in the arm with the announcement that US telecommunications giant GTE Corp has signed a deal to license the Prism software, which it will use to develop web-based services using enhanced-display telephones made by M-Power Corp. GTE says it will begin a marketing trial with 1,000 residential customers in early 1998, offering services that include visual voice mail, on-line directory searches and internet telephony. Spyglass already licenses Prism for use in 3Com Corp’s Palm Pilot and signed a similar licensing agreement in July with Geoworks Inc, which is developing a device to access web pages from smart cellular phones (CI No 3,197). Meanwhile the company says it will be coming out with a host of releases over the next couple of months. Spyglass Device Mosaic, the company’s thin web browser for non-PC devices is due for a 2.0 release in late September. The new version is HTML 3.2 and HTTP 1.0 compliant, and takes up 633Kb of code space, browsing, claims the company, in under 2Mb of memory. A modular design and customizable interface will enable the software to be adapted for the specific device, whether television, set-top box, screen phone, Network Computer or handheld computer. Spyglass Devicemail, a low footprint 128kb embedded web mail client with support for POP3 and IMAP4, is due for release sometime in November. Also in time for a November release, the company says it will be building more functionality into Mosaic, saying the new features will help speed the development of Internet applications without having to write code.

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