Cape Clear modifies platform to boost telco business
Anticipating that demand from the telecommunications industry will spur further Web services growth, Cape Clear Software has unveiled a new version of its Web services platform that officials say is aimed specifically at developers in that industry.
Telcos are looking to fuel growth in the cell-phone market by providing products that go beyond traditional telephone service, said John Maughan, director of engineering at Cape Clear (www.capeclear.com). The vendor's release this week of Cape Clear 4.5 provides support for integrating third-party content, such as stock market updates and sports scores, into cell-phone services, he added.
Since subscribers pay additional charges to read text messages or download pictures or games to their cell phones, telco-specific Web services offer new sources of revenue to telcos and content providers, added Maughan.
Cape Clear 4.5 is designed to provide tools for the variety of tasks telco developers will be asked to do, Maughan told XML Report. "The tools support multiple, different kinds of development," he said. "First off would be the interface to use services. Rather than providing language-specific or system-specific interfaces, you invoke a Web service. You can invoke a Web service whether you're working from a .NET environment, a Java environment or some sort of proprietary environment. So it gives you language neutrality on the client."
Cape Clear 4.5 also provides asynchronous processing for "fire-and-forget" delivery, using MQSeries or JMS as a transport for XML messages. This makes it possible to convert existing synchronous applications into asynchronous Web services, Maughan explained.
"At the back end in your telco, what you want to be able to do is provide services that don't depend on a synchronous response," he said. "What we've done is create Web services that enable you to create asynchronous applications from applications that were previously synchronous."
In addition, the new Web services platform supports both the MIME and DIME standards for attachments to enable applications such as SMS text messaging. Text messaging on cell phones is very popular, especially among young people in Europe, and is seen as a market that will blossom in the U.S., Maughan said.
Cape Clear 4.5 also supports the Parlay-X standard for XML and XSLT generation and processing. The Parlay-X specification makes it possible for telcos to quickly create links with customers and suppliers, he explained.
Rich Seeley is Web Editor for Campus Technology.