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New Middleware Platform Enables Interactive Communication Between Mobile Phones and Sensor Networks


TOKYO, JAPAN, October 13, 2006 -- NTT DoCoMo, Inc. (Headquarters: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan), and Hewlett-Packard Company(Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, U.S.A.) today announced they have been conducting joint research with the goals of developing a new application platform to interconnect cellular telephone systems and sensor networks and the development of a prototype of new middleware platform. Designed to work with networks found in homes and businesses that utilize sensors relying on a variety of transmission methods (hereafter, ’sensor networks’1), the Sensor Network Middleware Platform enables interactive communication between those networks and mobile phones.

The middleware is equipped with the interface which works with various transmission methods and enables exchanging data between mobile phones and the sensor networks. Software using this middleware is installed on both the sensor networks and the mobile phones, enabling the phones to access the sensor networks directly, across a variety of transmission methods. The phones can then be used to pull data, or even control devices connected to it. The middleware also makes it possible to develop applications and devices compatible with any sensor network, regardless of the type of transmission method it employs. This technology is expected to be useful for a wide range of services, enabling seamless connections between mobile phones and crime-prevention equipment, home appliances, IC tag readers, and other devices.

An experimental implementation has been constructed. This was built on DoCoMo’s testbed platform and DoCoMo and HP will continue to move ahead with technology testing and product validation. DoCoMo also looks at further standardization of that platform in cooperation with the PUCC2.

Note 1: Sensor Networks
Networks consisting of sensor and actuator nodes with communication capabilities, such as RFID inventory systems or environmental monitoring systems. Since nodes use many types of communications protocols a direct interconnection by cellular phones to these systems is difficult.

Note 2: Peer-to-Peer Universal Computing Consortium (PUCC)
Standards body made up of corporate members involved in the development and manufacture of peer-to-peer network systems and related devices. Founded December 1, 2004, with the goal of addressing the issue of how to ensure interoperability between such devices, the Consortium had 23 members as of September 29, 2006 (13 corporations, 8 universities and a non-profit organization).

About NTT DoCoMo
NTT DoCoMo is the world’s leading mobile communications company. DoCoMo serves more than 51 million customers, of which more than half subscribe to FOMA™, launched as the world’s first 3G mobile service based on W-CDMA in 2001. DoCoMo also offers a wide variety of leading-edge mobile multimedia services, including i-mode™, the world’s most popular mobile e-mail/Internet service, used by more than 46 million people. With the addition of credit-card and other e-wallet functions, DoCoMo mobile phones have become highly versatile tools for daily life. NTT DoCoMo is listed on the Tokyo (9437), London (NDCM) and New York (DCM) stock exchanges.
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About HP
HP is a technology solutions provider to consumers, businesses and institutions globally. The company’s offerings span IT infrastructure, global services, business and home computing, and imaging and printing. For the four fiscal quarters ended July 31, 2006, HP revenue totaled $90.0 billion. More information about HP (NYSE, Nasdaq: HPQ) is available at

i-mode and FOMA are trademarks or registered trademarks of NTT DoCoMo, Inc. in Japan and other countries.
NTT DoCoMo’s FOMA service is only available to subscribers in Japan.


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