'Push' E-Mail Service For iPhone Pops Up - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Software // Enterprise Applications

'Push' E-Mail Service For iPhone Pops Up

Visto's Mobile product includes support for Microsoft Exchange and IBM Lotus Domino.

Visto on Thursday announced that its mobile e-mail service will work on the iPhone, giving users access to enterprise e-mail systems.

Apple's upcoming iPhone has been criticized for its lack of support for business applications. IT managers are likely to be put off by the idea of employees bringing in iPhones as their business smartphones. But Visto is hoping to change their mentality with its Visto Mobile service, which will let iPhone users access enterprise e-mail systems, including Microsoft Exchange and IBM Lotus Domino.

"We saw a need for the iPhone to support corporate e-mail, considering its popularity and price tag. We think professionals would want to get their hands on one, both for business and personal purposes," said Joyce Kim, VP of marketing at Visto, in an interview.

Apple hasn't opened up the iPhone to developers so they can create third-party applications for the iPhone, although CEO Steve Jobs made a promise at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this month that Apple is working on it. In the meantime, software providers have to find other ways of getting their apps on the iPhone. Visto will use the IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) standard to deliver business e-mail to the iPhone, said Kim. The iPhone comes with a built-in rich HTML e-mail client, which fetches e-mail in the background from most POP3 (Post Office Protocol version 3) and IMAP e-mail services. This includes most consumer e-mail services like AOL, Yahoo, and Google's Gmail. The client also displays photos and graphics along with the text.

To get started with Visto, iPhone users would have to download on their desktops an application that would then sync up with the iPhone and start sending e-mail back and fourth. A wizard on the desktop will take users through the steps to self-configure on the iPhone. Once they've completed the setup, the iPhone and Visto's desktop app will start synchronizing. "Lack of third-party support is what may hinder the iPhone in the enterprise, but the good news is that e-mail already uses standards that Apple has leveraged," said Kim.

Visto offers a "push e-mail" service similar to the BlackBerry, which delivers e-mail directly from a server to a smartphone. Companies interested in purchasing iPhones in bulk to use with business e-mail can purchase Visto's server-based software that's installed inside the enterprise firewall and integrates with Exchange and Lotus Domino.

Security is another big issue companies need to consider before bringing the iPhone into the enterprise. Visto said its e-mail service uses end-to-end security, which means data is encrypted as it leaves the corporate firewall and travels to the iPhone.

Visto Mobile for the iPhone will be available at the end of the third quarter of this year.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
2021 Outlook: Tackling Cloud Transformation Choices
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  1/4/2021
Enterprise IT Leaders Face Two Paths to AI
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  12/23/2020
10 IT Trends to Watch for in 2021
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  12/22/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you.
Flash Poll