Unlike many start-ups today that incorporate and then develop their products or services, NetMorf spent two years developing its wireless solution before forming the company. Only four months after incorporation, the company, has unveiled its product, SiteMorfer 2.0, which ports existing back-end Web data and services to wireless devices and addresses the growing need for e-business companies to deploy complementary wireless solutions.
"If we can leverage existing e-business infrastructures - all that money and effort poured into building a really cool back-end e-business site-and deliver the right service and the right device and at the right time, that's what we're looking to do," explains Michael Maggio, president and ceo. "There is clearly a new market evolving and it's the market that combines what's happening in the e-business world tied to the ubiquitous handsfree access of wireless," he adds.
Maggio and Chuck Conley, vice president of marketing, point out that identifying what functions a company needs to throw onto a wireless device is as important a decision as the initial one to enter the wireless fray. Given limitations inherent in the wireless world-from limited screen size and input mechanisms to device and location information that every wireless link-up requires-the decision to push everything out to a wireless device isn't necessarily the best idea. The answer, they believe, are those parts of e-business that require time-critical notifications and transactions, anything from stock updates and trading to impulse shopping.
In theory, SiteMorfer 2.0 is very simple. Collect information and transactional content from back-end servers, translate it and push it out to the wireless ISPs. SiteMorfer Media Server has been designed to download data from any number of back-end sources. The data is then formatted according to templates created in SiteMorfer designer. The content is translated into XML, which can then be translated again into any number of wireless protocols.
"The thing is, when developing this product, we didn't know what devices would be winners in the mobile world, and we still don't know," says Conley. "And, we don't know what the back-end's going to be, so we built a product that could talk to any back-end and deliver to any front-end device."
A key component to release 2.0 is the SiteMorfer Designer. With Designer, companies will be able to create their own wireless pages in the future without the aid of the NetMorf staff. It will also allow NetMorf to license the technology to Application Service Providers like Razorfish