LAS VEGAS, Nev. -- AT&T; Microelectronics announced today that a host of vendors will provide hardware and applications software products, development tools, network services and connectivity products for personal communicators--mobile, hand- held communication devices based on AT&T;'s Hobbit(R) microprocessor.
Leading hardware manufacturers, NEC Corporation and Toshiba Corporation, announced they will create products based on the Hobbit platform.
"The breadth of companies announcing their support for the Hobbit platform today marks the emergence of the personal communicator into the market," said William J. Warwick, president of AT&T; Microelectronics.
"The products, the technology and the applications are here today for people on the go who need to be in contact with their office, home or clients anytime, anywhere."
Personal communicators, an emerging class of small, mobile devices that incorporate an electronic pen interface, will allow users to exchange voice, fax and electronic mail messages via landline and wireless telecommunications media. Eventually, they will incorporate graphics and full-motion video capabilities.
Ease of use is a key factor for adoption of these products, and AT&T; Microelectronics has been working with GO Corporation to optimize GO's PenPoint mobile operating system for the Hobbit microprocessor.
The goal of this effort is to create an open platform for both hardware and software companies to develop compatible personal communicator products.
Bill Campbell, president and chief executive officer of GO Corporation, said, "It is exciting to see major companies, like NEC and Toshiba, supporting the Hobbit processor and GO's PenPoint operating system. AT&T; Microelectronics and GO are providing an open, high-performance platform for personal communicators."
personal communicators through its Phone Center stores under the AT&T; label. o AT&T; Paradyne announced it will provide the communications
capabilities of its V.32bis KeepInTouch(R) PCMCIA credit card modems for personal communicators. o EO, Inc. announced earlier this month the first personal
communicators based on the Hobbit/PenPoint platform. AT&T; Consumer Products and EO are both showing their products here at COMDEX/ Fall '92. o NEC announced it plans to develop Hobbit-based products. o Toshiba Corporation also announced that it will commit
resources to build Hobbit-based personal communication products and to help develop the market.
Fourteen software companies--led by prominent companies such as GO, Slate, Pensoft, PenMagic, Ink Development, Notable Technologies and WordPerfect--have agreed to develop applications software, handwriting recognition software, development tools and communications products for the Hobbit microprocessor platform.
These products are specifically designed to take advantage of pen-based input and to accommodate a variety of end-user applications.
Interactive Layout product (PenSIL) will be available for Hobbit-based personal communicators. o GO Corporation announced its PenPoint Hobbit SDK (software
development kit), an advanced object-oriented programming environment for designing software applications for Hobbit/ PenPoint-based personal communicators. o MetaWare Incorporated will provide its High C compiler
products for application developers working on Hobbit-based products. o Slate Corporation's PenApps Application Builder for PenPoint
applications development will be available for personal communicators running on the Hobbit/PenPoint platform.
applications for Hobbit-based systems specially targeted to the new class of mobile computer where communication capabilities are integrated. o Ink Development Corporation's InkWare NoteTaker will be
available for Hobbit-based personal communicators. o Intuit's Quicken and QuickBooks, financial software packages
for personal and financial automation, will run on Hobbit- based systems. o Notable Technologies, Inc.'s Shared Whiteboard is designed
to allow users to communicate graphically over a real-time telecommunications connection. o PenMagic Software Inc.'s Numero financial application and
its LetterExpress writing assistant will be available for Hobbit-based personal communicators. o Pensoft Corporation's Perspective, a personal information
manager, has been announced. o Slate Corporation's Day-Timer PenScheduler has been
announced. o WordPerfect Corporation, one of the leading providers of
word processing software and executive productivity packages, plans to develop application software for the Hobbit/PenPoint platform.
software will be ported to the Hobbit platform, providing users with access to local-area network and desktop computer resources.
handwriting recognition software will be available on Hobbit/PenPoint platforms. o ParaGraph International announced that a version of their
CalliGrapher cursive handwriting recognition software for Hobbit-based products will be available for OEM/commercial release in early 1993. At the same time, several companies announced that they will produce Japanese versions of Hobbit/PenPoint applications and software tools.
Those companies include: aha! software corporation, First Pen Systems Inc, Ink Development Corporation, Notable Technologies, Inc., ParaGraph International, Pensoft Corporation, PenMagic Corporation and Slate Corporation.
AT&T; Microelectronics is creating a Hobbit-based reference design as an evaluation platform for equipment manufacturers and other parties. Two companies providing support for AT&T; Microelectronics in producing reference designs for personal communicators are: o Logitech Inc. which ported its digitizer for pen-based input
to the Hobbit platform; and o CreativePen systems, Inc., which has produced mechanical and
Several organizations are providing the network services necessary for widespread use of personal communicators. o AT&T; EasyLink Services has developed a communication link
for AT&T; Mail, a leading electronic mail service, that will be bundled free of charge with every version of GO's PenPoint mobile operating system. The link will give Hobbit/Pen Point users access to each other, to a host of information services and, via AT&T; Mail gateways, to more than 20 million electronic mail users worldwide. The link will be included on both EO and AT&T; personal communicators. o McCaw Cellular Communications, Inc., the nation's largest
cellular carrier, sees the development of the Hobbit platform and personal communicators as essential to realizing the vision of customers controlling technology to improve their productivity and personal freedom by manipulating both voice and data communications. o RAM Mobile Data said its wireless data network--which will
provide two-way communications to thousands of cities in the top 100 metropolitan statistical areas in the U.S. and along major transportation corridors--will support Hobbit-based personal communicators through AT&T; Microelectronics' V.32 Mobitex chip set. RAM uses Mobitex network technology, which is based on non-proprietary, open protocols and offers worldwide standards for hardware and software that will help spread the use of personal communicators. AT&T; Microelectronics provides a wide range of semiconductors and electronic components for applications such as personal communicators, personal computers, workstations, local- area networks and telecommunications and possesses deep resources in design tools and standard-cell and programmable logic.
The Hobbit family of processors is designed and marketed by Personal Communication Systems, AT&T; Microelectronics, 4995 Patrick Henry Drive, Santa Clara, Calif. 95054.