SEAGULL Wireless-to-Host Gets DBCS Support

SEAGULL Software (Atlanta), a provider of e-business-enabling software, will begin testing Double Byte Character Support (DBCS) in its Wireless-to-Host software product line, providing wireless access to business applications running on the S/390 and AS/400 platforms.

Andre den Haan, SEAGULL’s vice president of product strategy, says there were several reasons why SEAGULL decided to bring DBCS-capabilities to their Wireless-to-Host products. “Asia and the pacific region has a very high rate of adopting wireless products, probably the highest in the world,” he says. “It is an enormous market for us.”

Also, SEAGULL decided to “step up to the plate,” says den Haan, and bring DBCS-capabilities to the region, along with their partner, Pan Pacific Information and Development (Taipei, Taiwan), which is also SEAGULL’s distributor in Taiwan.

Pan Pacific Information Technology and Development will participate in the testing; the results will determine when DBCS-enabled SEAGULL’s Wireless-to-Host software will be available.

DBCS is used to represent languages that require more than 256 characters, like Japanese, Chinese and Korean that contain several thousand characters. In DBCS, two bytes are used for each character, which gives a possible maximum of 65,000 characters.

In addition to the growth of wireless products in general, the growth of Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) products, and the Japanese standard i-Mode, contributed to the decision, says den Haan. WAP was introduced in 1997, and was conceived by four companies: Ericsson, Motorola, Nokia and (formerly known as Unwired Planet). i-Mode was the first smart phone system for Web browsing and grew very quickly after its introduction in 1999. It uses a subset of HTML, in contrast to the global WAP standard, which uses WML, a variation of HTML.

Den Haan says the SEAGULL product will benefit IBM AS/400 users because it will enable them to create wireless applications from business processes. Wireless solutions supporting DBCS will enable AS/400 users to get access to their DBCS information from anywhere, anytime, using wireless devices.

SEAGULL Software specializes in e-business software technology that opens enterprise applications for the Web, Wireless and Windows access and helps organizations integrate enterprise applications with other software to execute business processes from anywhere, and from any device. The company is an IBM business partner, and a winner of the “All-Star AS/400 Partner in Development.” SEAGULL has direct operations in the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom, as well as distributors representing more than 50 countries.

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