IBM, AT&T Enter SMB Market

With SMBs an increasingly hot market in the telecom world, two major industry players are going after what has typically been the target for smaller companies.

IBM Corp. and AT&T Corp. this week said they are rolling out their own service bundles for small and medium-sized businesses, which will be sold through their respective partner programs.

IBM is combining its Workplace Services Express software with AT&Ts Managed Internet Service to create a turnkey bundle aptly named IBM Workplace Services Express with AT&T Managed Internet Service for SMBs.

Workplace Services Express facilitates instant messaging, document management and other applications. This lets SMBs share information with employees, contractors and partners.

Meanwhile, AT&Ts Managed Internet Service offers high-speed Internet access that does not require an in-house IT department.

The combined product installs on an IBM xSeries eServer and supports Windows or Linux servers and browser clients.

The bundled services are undergoing initial testing and will be sold through IBM Business Partners and AT&T Authorized Agents once testing is complete.

“Our joint portal solution gives AT&T agents and IBM Business Partners an easy-to-implement portal and a secure Internet connectivity bundle, enabling them to offer their customers a competitive tool that helps them to reduce their costs, see swift return on their investment and better compete in their market,” says Eric Shepcaro, chief strategist for AT&T Business Services.

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