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IBM Helps Businesses Go Social with New Mobile Software

IBM has its eyes trained on the mobile space with a series of apps to help businesses embrace social networking.

IBM has its eyes trained on the mobile space with a series of apps to help businesses embrace social networking.

The software can be downloaded from major app stores, including Android, Apple and BlackBerry and gain access immediately to employee data, status updates, videos and other content. The announcement is meant to take advantage of the growing use of social media. With more than one billion mobile users combined with the rise of social networking in the workplace, companies are looking for ways to use these technologies “to help organizations accelerate collaboration, deepen customer relationships, generate new ideas faster and enable a more effective workforce,” IBM officials said in a press release.

Along those lines, IBM announced plans this week for the following apps:

New social networking app: Available for free, the new IBM Connections app works just like IBM social software, except with added functionality for Google Android smartphones and tablets, Apple iOS devices and BlackBerry smartphones. In addition to the popular File share application, Profiles, and Activities, Blogs and generate-and-vote-on-ideas features, workers can now take photos with their smartphones and upload them directly to Connections, IBM said. All three apps are available now in their respective apps stores.

Partial wipe for Apple iOS devices: This software provides “partial wipe” capability for Apple iOS devices and permits an IT administrator to wipe just the company data from the device while still preserving a worker’s personal data. Administrators can still initiate a full reset wipe as well. Traveler enables IBM email, contacts and calendar information to be accessible from mobile devices.

Click-to-call from Android OS device calendar: Available in beta now, Lotus Notes Traveler will allow IBM email users to call people listed in their calendar views with just a click.

Unified Communications for Android devices: IBM’s Sametime software for Android extends presence awareness and instant messaging with new features such as text-to-speech – which can read incoming messages when the users cannot stop to look at the device – and the ability to send photos taken with the device through Sametime chats. It can also automatically update location status. Workers who also have Sametime Unified Telephony software reduce phone use costs by initiating calls to whatever phone happens to be nearby.

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Online meeting support for BlackBerry: IBM Sametime meetings support allows BlackBerry users to participate in online meetings using their mobile devices.

Cloud-based meeting support for Android: LotusLive Meetings support for the Android OS is planned to be available later this year.

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