Nokia is to buy software vendor Intellisync in an attempt to improve the connectivity of Nokia devices to a variety of data sources. Intellisync makes wireless e-mail, synchronisation and device management software and the company supports a wide range of mobile devices.

Nokia has been making inroads in the enterprise mobility market and recently introduced the Nokia Business Center,software that provides push e-mail and is expected to allow remote access to other corporate databases. However, Nokia has been hampered by the fact that its offerings work only with Linux servers and Nokia devices; hence the need for the Intellisync deal.

This support could mean that Nokia might have to work with competing products but Nokia said that the purchase wouldn't conflict with the goals of Nokia's handset business or with Nokia's ability to support its operator customer preferences. "We will manage this in a way that protects the interest of partners that do have competing devices," said Mary McDowell, executive vice president and general manager of Nokia's Enterprise Solutions group.

She said Nokia will also continue to support software that might compete with Intellisync's. "Our intent is to respond to carriers. So Vodafone has an arrangement with Visto. It's important that we support Visto for those customers so we'd continue to do that," she said. Visto offers a push e-mail product.

The acquisition may also provide an opening for Nokia to sell to CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) operators. Nokia's strongest customer base comes from the GSM community but Intellisync has customers, including Verizon Wireless, in the CDMA market. "It expands our stronghold from GSM to also address the CDMA customers that Intellisync has," McDowell said.