In Brief: IBM readies SOA packages

Also in Brief: Intel to invest $300M in Vietnam chip plant; SOA, Forum integrate products; Ericsson sues Samsung in patent dispute; Sony, NEC to establish optical disc joint venture; Orange offers wireline service; ObjectWeb announces EasyBeans project; Fluke enhances VoIP with Visual UpTime Select update

IBM at its PartnerWorld conference in Las Vegas later this month plans to help integrators and ISVs build SOAs based on the company's WebSphere platform.

The company will offer five SOA Solution Builder Express packages, each featuring templates for solving specific tasks. These tasks include improving operational efficiency, employee access to information, customer retention, employee productivity, and reducing administrative costs. Combinations of IBM software products will be offered in the packages, including the WebSphere application server, WebSphere ESB (Enterprise Service Bus), WebSphere Portal, and Rational Application Developer. Best practices also will be included. Other offerings for SOA and SMB will be offered at PartnerWorld as well. PartnerWorld begins on March 12. Intel to invest $300M in Vietnamchip plant

February 28, 5:05 a.m. PDT

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, plans to invest $300 million in Vietnam on a chip assembly and testing plant. It will be the first factory of its kind ever built in Vietnam. The plant, to be located in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly known as Saigon), will eventually employ 1,200 people, mainly Vietnamese. Construction will begin immediately. Intel cited Vietnam's progress in building its technology infrastructure, as well as the need to support demand for its chips as the main reasons for the investment. Once finished, it will be Intel's seventh chip assembly site in the company's global network, which includes Penang and Kulim, Malaysia; Cavite, Philippines; Chengdu and Shanghai, China; and San Jose, Costa Rica. Intel plans to spend over $6 billion by the end of this year on new factories and equipment, the company said. SOA, Forum integrate products

February 27, 6:10 a.m. PDT

SOA Software and Forum Systems on Monday are announcing that SOA Software's Service Manager product for SOA management can integrate with the Forum Systems XWall Web services firewall. The integration means Service Manager can access monitoring data from XWall using the WS-DM (Web Services Distributed Management) specification, and control XWall via the WS-Policy specification, according to SOA Systems. "[The integration] allows users to manage their infrasctructure from one console instead of having to use multiple consoles. It's critical for ensuring consistent enforcement of policy," said Ian Goldsmith, vice president of marketing at SOA Software. Service Manager also can be used to control Forum's Sentry SOA Gateway. Ericsson sues Samsung in patent dispute

February 27, 6:10 a.m. PDT

Sweden's Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson has filed a lawsuit in four countries against Samsung Electronics after the two companies failed to reach an agreement on royalty payments for the use of patents. The lawsuits were filed in Germany, the Netherlands, the U.K., and the U.S. The two companies had originally signed a license agreement in 2002, allowing Samsung to use essential patents from Ericsson for GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications), GPRS (General Packet Radio Service), and EDGE (Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution) technologies, Ericsson said. The Swedish telecommunications equipment manufacturer was one of several manufacturers, mostly from Europe, that created the GSM standard and continues to hold essential patents for the technology. Samsung could not be immediately reached. A representative for Ericsson declined to say when the company expected to end the dispute or what amounts Ericsson is seeking. Patent infringement and licensing disputes aren't uncommon in the communications sector where companies can spend billions of dollars on research and development and are prepared to sue to protect their investments. Sony, NEC to establish optical disc joint venture

February 27, 6:10 a.m. PDT

Sony and NEC signed a definitive agreement on Monday to combine their optical disc drive businesses into a single company. The new company, Sony NEC Optiarc, will start business on April 3 and will be headed by Shinichi Yamamura, who is currently deputy president of Sony's video business group. Sony will own 55 percent of the new company and NEC will hold the remaining 45 percent stake. The company will handle the optical drive businesses of both companies including manufacturing, marketing, and sales of drives for the Sony-backed Blu-ray Disc technology and NEC-backed HD-DVD technology. It will also handle development and engineering of optical drives. The merger will take advantage of complementary technologies: NEC has expertise in optical-disc LSI (large scale integrated circuit) chip technology while Sony is strong in optical pick-ups. Both companies are already major manufacturers of optical disc drives. Orange offers wireline service

February 24, 7:00 a.m. PDT

Orange said on Friday that its existing small to medium-sized business customers in the U.K. will be able to sign up for Orange fixed line telephone services in the office and receive a single bill for their mobile and landline services. Customers will be able to call a single customer service line for help with mobile and fixed services, and they'll receive discounted rates for calls between Orange landlines and Orange mobile phones. The service will launch in the second quarter. Orange won't sell the fixed line offering without also selling a mobile service. Orange is initially targeting customers with as many as 250 users but in the future may broaden its offering to businesses as large as 500 users. ObjectWeb announces EasyBeans project

February 22, 8:05 a.m. PDT

The ObjectWeb open-source consortium announced Wednesday the creation of the EasyBeans project. EasyBeans aims to offer a pluggable, easy-to-use, open-source container based on the EJB 3 (Enterprise Java Beans) spec. EasyBeans can be deployed on a Java EE application server such as JOnAS, or used stand-alone without requiring the deployment of a full-fledged J2EE app server. More information on the EasyBeans project can be found at: Fluke enhances VoIP with Visual UpTime Select update

February 22, 8:05 a.m. PDT

Fluke Networks has enhanced Visual UpTime Select to better help enterprises optimize their VoIP deployments. Visual UpTime Select helps assess, monitor, and manage application and network performance and availability across the entire enterprise. It enables network managers to troubleshoot both real-time and intermittent VoIP performance issues, and provides in-depth performance reports for complete VoIP lifecycle management. The new release is available this week at no additional charge to existing VoIP module customers. New customer pricing begins at $795 per site. For more information visit: