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Going Wireless In Davos

Global movers and shakers attending the World Economic Forum this week in Davos, Switzerland, will get more than a list of events and a tote bag when they register. They'll be handed wireless devices that will let them send E-mail, check conference schedules, read biographies of the speakers, and more.

Each of the 2,200 political, business, and academic honchos who are expected to attend the forum will receive a Compaq iPaq handheld device. The devices use Microsoft's mobile operating system with software from AvantGo Inc. Accenture is the system integrator. Each device will have wireless Internet access.

Summit organizers are handing out the devices to ease communication among delegates. But, of course, the vendors love the idea of winning the loyalty of the planet's heaviest hitters. "You definitely want to make an impression on this group," says Richard Owen, CEO of AvantGo, which aggregates dozens of information services for download to palmtops.

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