IBM unveiled the latest version of its DB2 Universal database last week, along with its first issue of the product for users of mobile and handheld devices.
DB2 Version 6.1 will ship at the end of July in Unix, Linux, Windows NT and OS/2 versions, IBM said.
Improvements in this version include a new graphics tool for building Java-stored procedures, which IBM said will speed the creation and deployment of enterprise resource planning, customer management and Ecommerce applications.
Administration features have also been improved to enable users to integrate and search multiple information types, including XML content, the company said.
The DB2 Satellite edition is a full-function version of the database, aimed at businesses that want to roll out large numbers of mobile users.
Administration is centralised and will include replication facilities to keep mobile systems synchronised with the central database.
IBM also announced DB2 Everywhere for Windows CE and PalmOS. Everywhere, whose existence was first revealed in PC Week on 27 October 1998, is a 50Kb version of the company's database designed for use in handheld devices, such as mobile telephones and personal digital assistants. It can be pre-loaded by vendors or used by organisations for remote workforce applications.
Data can be synchronised with enterprise servers running DB2, Lotus Notes, Microsoft Exchange and personal information management applications using IBM Mobile Connect.
"It's pukka DB2 - it supports the standard interface, and you can tie applications to the database," said IBM UK's data marketing consultant, Mike Blake.
Everywhere rivals Sybase's Anywhere, the first mobile version of a mainstream database product. Last week, Microsoft and Oracle reaffirmed plans for mobile versions of their databases.
Currently being beta-tested, Satellite and Everywhere versions of DB2 are due for release by the end of the year.
Pricing for DB2 6.1 has not been released, but IBM said it will offer a simplified per-processor pricing model and unlimited Web access at less than one-third of some competitors' prices.
A DB2 Personal Developer's edition will be offered for free.
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