Novell's messaging and collaboration platform, GroupWise, has been having a rough go of late. The technology has fallen behind the competition, and recent news indicates that Novell's biggest customer base, government, may be looking to other solutions -- like the city of Los Angeles, which abandoned GroupWise in favor of Google Apps [PDF]. Poor mobile support, particularly for popular devices like the iPhone has no doubt been a contributing factor. Government in particular has lots of mobile employees -- case workers, inspectors, and the like -- making high-quality mobile support a necessity.
Today, Novell has announced its response to the mobile challenge: the Data Synchronizer Mobility Pack. The solution will synchronize email, calendars, and contacts with all ActiveSync-enabled devices, and it will replace Novell's GroupWise Mobile Server.
[ InfoWorld's Galen Gruman says that Apple is staging a corporate mobile takeover with the iPhone 4.0 OS. ]
Tellingly, Novell went out of its way to mention that the Data Synchronizer Mobility Pack will support the iPhone -- in fact, it's the only device mentioned by name. As Apple's handheld is being brought into more and more work environments, IT departments are finding that they have to be able to integrate the iPhone support into their operations. And that trend seems certain to accelerate with iPhone OS 4.0's new business-friendly features.