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Our wireless business solutions include providing the most dynamic, flexible, and comprehensive technology for wirelessly enabling critical back-end solutions and corporate data across any carrier, network or device.

What is WAP?

WAP is an acronym for Wireless Application Protocol. It is a de facto standard for mobile communications. WAP allows mobile devices (mobile phone, PDA, wireless-ready pager, etc.) to access and retrieve information from a range of different sources, most notably from the Web. In short, a WAP-enabled device is like a miniature web browser that can interact with any Internet-based application. Graphical content is clearly an area with its limitations, given the current size of many WAP devices, although plans are underway to launch devices with larger, colour display capabilities.

WAP content is marked up in a language known as WML, or Wireless Markup Language. Similar to HTML, WML allows screens of information, known as cards to be constructed. A range of WML tags are provided, allowing a range of interfaces to be created and shown on WAP-enabled devices. Scripted content, i.e. small applications, can also be written in a JavaScript-like language known as WMLScript.

Need help some WAP terms? Check out our WAP glossary!

How does WAP work?

There are three major parts of any WAP-enabled system, namely the WAP Gateway, the HTTP Web server, and the WAP device itself, which is interacting with the WAP Gateway, as Figure 1 illustrates below. The WAP Gateway sends WML- formatted content to the WAP device, whilst the WAP gateway must communicate with the Web server using the Web's primary protocol, HTTP.

Figure 1

All Web servers can communicate with a variety of information sources, using a number of different integration tools and protocols, for example a Web server can serve pages of information that are generated by tools such as Active Server Pages (ASP), ColdFusion, or PHP. Database integration is achieved using protocols such as CGI (the Common Gateway Interface) or, more likely, ODBC, as Figure 2 illustrates.

Figure 2

Essentially, this is the technical infrastructure of WAP.

What is the origin of WAP and how will it affect my business?

Back in 1997, Ericsson were the first mobile phone company to form the WAP initiative, along with Nokia, Motorola, and Unwired Planet (now phone.com). In December 1997 these companies formed the WAP forum Ltd, which now manages the development of this open standard. At the beginning of 2000, some 200 companies now form part of the WAP forum.

Wireless communication is a phenomenon that has even overtaken the growth of the Internet itself. With some 400,000 mobile phone users around the world, the ability to access informational services via a mobile phone will be vital. Given that our lives are mobile, the need to access information whilst on the move will ultimately become more important than using desktop computers to access information.

As all new mobile phones and PDAs become WAP-enabled, services for these devices will grow very quickly. A range of WAP services are already available, mainly concentrating around the delivery of information from Internet sources, although many companies are taking the initiative by giving access to personalized information, for example bank account data etc.

In summary, WAP allows you to:

     Read and send Internet-based email e.g. POP/SMTP mail;
     Retrieve information from the Internet, both in terms of page
    content, and database queries;
     Receive notifications or alerts, e.g. when a share price is updated, etc;
     Carry out e-commerce tasks, by purchasing via a phone -
    based interface (now known as m-commerce).
To find out more information about our "WAP Development" packages, please call or e-mail us!

CSC Development, Ltd. - cscdevelopment.com
Denver, Colorado 80224
Office: 303.564.3173
Fax: 303.564.3173

E-mail; Info@cscdevelopment.com



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