Microsoft Buys STNC for its Mobile Access to 'Net

Microsoft signals its intention to move into the wireless telephone market with its purchase of UK-based software development company STNC

Microsoft Corp. has acquired STNC, a U.K.-based software development company whose software provides access to intranets and the Internet from mobile devices, including phones and PDAs (personal digital assistants).

The company will be fully integrated into Microsoft's productivity appliances division, Microsoft announced today in a statement. STNC's technology will be used in future digital cellular products to let users read e-mail, view calendars and access the Internet, Microsoft said.

The move demonstrates Microsoft's intention to develop a wireless telephone platform, the company said.

STNC's technology is designed to be portable, keeping the code-size and the use of dynamic RAM to a minimum, and to operate in environments where memory and processing power are restricted, according to information on STNC's Web site.

STNC, with 40 employees, is privately owned but has been backed by venture capital firm 3i PLC. It has technology partnerships with L.M. Ericsson Telephone Co., Psion PLC, Symbian Ltd. and other makers of operating systems and hardware for mobile phones, according to its Web site.

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