Compaq has taken the first step to electronic commerce with its distributors and resellers by establishing a products and information extranet.
ChannelNet was developed locally in conjunction with multimedia developer Terabyte Interactive, says Compaq’s Internet and database services manager, Chris Hooper. Hooper wanted to have a system that is as easy to use as the Internet, but without the inherent security problems.
He also plans to expand the service to include online ordering and tracking facilities. The site offers access to an online equivalent of Compaq’s price books. Hooper says the format is a familiar one for users but offers a more easily accessed database. In ChannelNet, only those accessories that can be added to a product are listed with each product.
The site contains diagrams of hardware so users can see if the product is the one they are seeking. The database of information is updated hourly.ChannelNet includes Channel Cast, which is a page of announcements, promotions and advisories.