Sierra Wireless announced the Voq line of professional phones and value-added software for business users. These new Voq-branded professional phones will be based on Microsoft Windows Mobile software for Smartphones and will feature both a familiar phone keypad and unique flip-open QWERTY thumbpad.
The first Voq model will support global markets by operating over the GSM and GPRS wireless networks and is planned for commercial availability in the first half of 2004.
"Sierra Wireless' Voq promises to be the most important new entrant in the messaging device space in 2004. By going with the Windows Mobile platform and leveraging their proven experience in wireless data, Sierra Wireless and Voq are setting the standard for future phone/messaging handhelds," said Ken Hyers, Senior Analyst, In-Stat/MDR.
"Traditional handset manufacturers are struggling to produce a Smartphone that truly addresses the needs of the corporate mainstream," said Dale Vile, Senior Analyst, Quocirca. "The ability to store and access business information is of little benefit if it cannot be navigated conveniently, and effective business messaging requires a comfortable input mechanism. Sierra Wireless understands that innovative ways of tackling these issues are essential if service providers are to gain acceptance of Smartphones and tap new revenue streams in the business sector."
The Voq professional phone is based on Windows Mobile 2003 for Smartphones, which enables users to synchronize their most important information from Outlook, browse the Internet, listen to music, and customize their phones with personalization options. It has a 200MHz Intel PXA262 processor with stacked flash memory with value-added hardware and software product capabilities that include:
A familiar 12-key dial-pad for full mobile phone functionality and a unique flip-open QWERTY thumbpad for easy text entry;
A remarkably simple way to store, navigate and retrieve information;
Secure, automatically updated e-mail requiring no desktop redirector or dedicated server. The e-mail solution supports standard enterprise email systems including Microsoft Exchange, Lotus Notes, and Novell Groupwise;
Software upgrade options with e-mail functionality and support for existing Virtual Private Networking (VPN) security systems.
Voq hardware and software products will be in network operator and end user testing programs in Europe and North America through Q1 of 2004. In addition to working closely with Microsoft and Intel, Sierra Wireless is partnering with Flextronics International Ltd., a global leader in wireless handset manufacturing, to manufacture Voq products.