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CMG's WAP Service Broker chosen by Cable & Wireless Optus to support launch of WAP service Downunder.

Singapore, 22 November 1999 - CMG Telecommunications today announced that it is providing the WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) server which is supporting Cable & Wireless Optus' launch of Australia's first WAP service.

Called networkerä, the service will be available to Optus' retail GSM mobile customers as of 30 November 1999. Cable & Wireless Optus is Australia's fastest growing mobile service with over 2.2 million customers.

Following trials in Hong Kong, CMG was appointed by Cable and Wireless Optus to supply their WAP gateway. CMG installed its WAP Broker Service at Cable & Wireless Optus in Sydney earlier this year.

WAP is a worldwide standard that empowers mobile phone users to easily access Internet portals rich with information and services - in effect creating a 'mobile adapted Internet'.

"Cable & Wireless Optus chose the CMG WAP solution for several reasons, including the technology employed in the conversion system that enables the mobile phone to talk to the Internet, and the systems expansion capabilities. High levels of operational performance and reliability are achieved through the use of a dual node, fully-resilient configuration. The manageability of the system will allow Cable & Wireless Optus to provide their customers with highly flexible pricing and service solutions," says Frans Veen, Managing Director of CMG's Singapore office.

The CMG Service provides Cable & Wireless Optus with the means of creating differentiated Internet services especially tailored to the needs of mobile network users. Selected information from the Internet services will be converted into a form suitable for display on the new WAP compliant handsets.

Data exchange between the Internet and a mobile phone is effected via a gateway. The CMG WAP Service Broker assists the mobile user by providing access to the Internet information that is suited to mobile phones in the WAP format.

CMG's WAP Service Broker system is the first in the world to be WAP V1.1 specification compliant. The WAP specification defines protocol conversion between Internet Protocol and cellular environments, including support for the Circuit Switched Data (CSD) and Short Message Services (SMS) bearers. This baseline function is supplied by a WAP gateway.

Network operators, such as Cable & Wireless Optus, are not simply the wireless equivalent of an Internet Service Provider. They need more functionality in order to create differentiated service offers that enable the delivery of managed services to targeted user groups. Only by providing this will the customers be able to fully experience the true benefits of Mobile Internet access that WAP will provide.

Through its networker service, Cable & Wireless Optus will be offering a range of information menus to its customers including share prices, breaking news, sports news, horoscopes and weather. Networker will also provide mobile access to most Internet email accounts.

According to Cable & Wireless Optus, Managing Director Mobile, Paul O'Sullivan, networker converts the mobile phone into a mobile Internet machine for people who are on the move and want to stay in touch.

In the future, Cable & Wireless Optus will continue to update the content it provides to customers. "Our launch position for the WAP service will be increased over time as more content and applications are developed for the protocol. For example we are looking at offering movie session times and airline flight information early next year. Soon after we will move from information based content to transactional services such as ticketing, so you will be able to reserve a seat at the cinema or book a flight to the destination of your choice - all from your mobile," said Mr O'Sullivan.

In the future, CMG believes that the Internet information that will be most suited to mobile subscribers will be location based and time critical. This may include such services as flight departures and arrivals, weather forecasts, hotel and restaurant telephone numbers, addresses, information and booking, telebanking, share prices and trading. It is envisaged that carriers will look at providing services such as these over the coming year.

Existing phones are only capable of displaying plain text as one or more short messages, but the new WAP compatible sets will be able to display the information in easy to read formats and also allow interaction with the Internet.

Once mobile phone users have seen the benefits of WAP functionality it is expected that the demand for these services will follow the spectacular growth that the traditional Internet has seen over the last few years.

Background Information CMG

CMG Telecommunications has been an active member of the WAP Forum since 1998. The company is one of the few suppliers of cellular information systems having such a comprehensive solution - possibly the only supplier. The key products that make up CMG's offer to the mobile communications industries are: Short Message Service Centres, Cell Broadcast Systems, Mobile e-mail systems, Information Services systems and the WAP Service Broker. CMG has supplied over 100 systems to 60 mobile operators in more than fifty countries and the company is the undisputed market leader in messaging and gateway solutions.

CMG plc is a leading European IT services group, providing business information solutions through consultancy, systems development, software applications and managed services. Established in 1964, CMG operates internationally from its bases in the UK, Ireland, USA, Singapore, China, The Netherlands, Germany, France and Belgium, implementing and supporting applications for clients around the world. The Group is listed on the London and Amsterdam stock exchanges.

Background information Cable & Wireless Optus

Cable & Wireless Optus is Australia's leading integrated communications company - servicing more than three million customers each day. The company provides a broad range of communications services including mobile, national and long distance services, local telephony, business network services, Internet and satellite services and television.

Since commencing operations in 1992, Cable & Wireless Optus has invested more than $7bn in the construction of fixed, mobile and satellite networks, including central business district and suburban local access networks. These networks provide the company with an advanced technology platform capable of delivering integrated communications, information and entertainment services.

Cable & Wireless Optus is a member of the Cable & Wireless Group, a leader in global communications operating in more than 80 countries around the world.

For more information please contact:

Renate van Berchum, PR manager
Tel: +31 30 23 39 300
Fax: +31 30 23 39 490
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: www.cmgtelecom.com