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The Open Group Will Serve As Certification Authority For WAP Version 1.1

MENLO PARK, Calif. (November 22, 1999) - The Open Group, a vendor and technology-neutral consortium dedicated to enterprise integration, today announced an agreement to serve as the certification authority for the Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) Forum's world standard for wireless information and telephony services. For certification testing, The Open Group developed a test suite specification to ensure wireless vendors' products are compliant with the WAP V1.1 specification. As the certification authority, The Open Group will develop and operate the certification program on behalf of the WAP Forum.

"The Open Group was chosen for the WAP Version 1.1 certification testing because of its unrivaled experience in open systems testing and certification," said Doug Holbrook, chair of the WAP Forum's WAP Interoperability Group. "The Open Group provides the WAP Forum with the expertise required to meet our aggressive commitment to interoperability."

The WAP Forum has a large number of specifications describing the functionality and specific coding requirements of wireless phones and other devices for WAP certification. The Open Group's test suite measures conformance to the Wireless Markup Language (WML) application layer specifications, as well as WMLscript and WMLscript libraries. The certification test uses a WML server that delivers tests that run on the devices or phones, and performs a functionality and interoperability test at the application level.

WML, an eXtensible Markup Language (XML) application, serves as the markup language for WAP devices, just as HTML is the markup language for web pages. WMLscript and the associated WMLscript Libraries define a programming language, related to the ECMAscript language used for programs to run on web browsers.

The Open Group will develop additional tests for the cache model, which defines how WAP compliant phones and gateways store information. The consortium will also develop tests for the use of WAP phones in multiple languages, ensuring the phones will be able to display numerous characters sets, including Japanese, as well as the ASCII character set.

"The members of the WAP Forum have demonstrated their commitment to interoperability from the outset by ensuring that a robust testing and certification program is in place," said Allen Brown, President and CEO of

The Open Group. "We are pleased to have been selected to work with the WAP Forum: this is another step along the path towards our goal of becoming the global certification authority for interoperability."

bout WAP Version 1.1

The WAP Version 1.1 specifications are enabling the rapid commercial deployment of WAP-ready products and services worldwide. Using WAP V1.1, users of digital mobile phones and other wireless devices are able to securely access and instantly interact with Internet/intranet information and advanced telephony services.

WAP Version 1.1 provides handset manufacturers with a common global platform and a richer service offering to both consumers and carriers. Network operators can differentiate themselves through new WAP-compliant value-added services and enhancements to existing voice mail and email services. Infrastructure providers and content developers benefit from an expanded market for their products and services. Consumer and business users of WAP-ready mobile devices will have near anytime, anywhere access to information.

About the WAP Forum

The WAP Forum is an industry association that has developed the de-facto world standard for wireless information and telephony services on digital mobile phones and other wireless terminals. Handset manufacturers representing 95 percent of the world market across all technologies have committed to shipping WAP-enabled devices. Carriers representing more than 100 million subscribers worldwide have joined WAP. These commitments will put 10's of millions of WAP-browser-enabled products in consumer hands by the end of 2000. WAP Forum membership is open to all industry participants.

For further details on the WAP Forum and its members, please visit the Forum's Web site at www.wapforum.org. The Web site also includes a downloadable version of WAP V1.1.

About The Open Group

The Open Group is committed to delivering greater business efficiency by bringing together buyers and suppliers of information systems to lower the cost and risks associated with integrating new technology across the enterprise. The Open Group, a vender and technology-neutral consortium, ensures that multi-vendor information technology matches the demands and needs of customers. This is achieved through the development and deployment of frameworks, polices, best practices and standards in pursuit of the group's IT DialToneš vision --- the concept of making all technology as open and accessible as using a telephone.

By leveraging the expertise of its sponsors - Compaq Computer Corporation, Fujitsu Limited, Hewlett-Packard Company, Hitachi Limited, International Business Machines Corporation, NCR Corporation, Fujitsu Siemens Computers, Sun Microsystems Inc. - and other members comprising leading software companies, Fortune 500 users and government departments, The Open Group is well on its way to achieving the IT DialTone vision. Embracing the maxim: "we can do so much more together than alone", The Open Group is helping its members to stay ahead in the race to use technology to gain competitive advantage. Additional information about The Open Group is available at the consortium's web site at http://www.opengroup.org.

Note to editors: IT DialTone and The Open Group are trademarks of The Open Group in the US and other countries. All other products or company names mentioned are used for identification purposes only, and may be trademarks of their respective owners.