Sprint Offers Management Services For Wireless Devices - InformationWeek

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Sprint Offers Management Services For Wireless Devices

The suite lets companies treat wireless devices with the kind of control, security, and customization they use for laptops, Sprint says.

Wireless devices are increasingly being used to access business networks and computers, which creates new issues regarding IT control and security. To help address these issues, Sprint Corp. launched a suite of services for managing wireless devices and operations at this week's CTIA Wireless 2005 conference in New Orleans.

The Sprint Managed Mobility Services, available to Sprint Business Solutions customers, include device fulfillment, asset management, customized delivery of applications, billing- and pricing-management options, and security management. The suite lets companies treat wireless devices with the kind of control, security, and customization they use for laptops, Sprint says.

Imagistics International Inc., which sells, rents, and services copiers and fax machines, is one of 12 trial customers for Sprint Managed Mobility Services. Imagistics sees particular value in Sprint's configuration-management service, which provides the company with "over-the-air" installation of critical software components and helps minimize IT management costs, says John Chillock, VP of customer-service operations at Imagistics.

"Customer satisfaction is priority [No. 1] for us," Chillock says. Imagistics technicians use mobile devices, primarily Treo 600s, to receive customer information. "The [Managed Mobility Services] affords us a turnaround of 24 hours or less when [mobile] device replacement is required."

Imagistics has recently implemented cell-phone policies that cover personal use by employees, and Sprint provides the company with customized online billing reports "so we can see how the wireless minutes are being used," Chillock says. The billing-management piece allows Imagistics' technicians to use minutes from a centralized pool, which is more efficient than managing individual-usage plans. "This will allow us to reduce and control costs," Chillock says.

Remote disablement and passwords are also managed by Sprint. If a technician's mobile device is lost or stolen, for example, the data stored on the device is erased, and the device is disabled as soon as Imagistics notifies Sprint.

Pricing for the Sprint Managed Mobility Services varies based on the level of services selected and the size of the account.

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