Intel said this week it will offer a package of products and services to give Internet service providers and other companies "building blocks" to help them respond to the mushrooming demand for online access.
Called the Intel Service Provider Program, the service is aimed at the estimated 14,000 Internet service providers (ISPs) and applications services providers (ASPs) worldwide, as well as value-added resellers (VARs), the company said. ISPs are moving away from their traditional role as just access providers to suppliers of Internet access equipment, and Intel's products and services will help them expand their offerings, according to Intel.
"We believe the Internet economy is exploding, and right now chaos reigns," Robby Swinnen, director of Intel's Internet Service Provider Program, said. "Business models are being expanded and e-business is booming. It's a natural for us."
Intel will offer its Pentium III and Pentium III Xeon processor-based servers, networking equipment such as network interface cards, hubs, switches and routers, and virtual private network (VPN) technology. The servers will run on Linux, Solaris or Windows NT operating systems, according to Swinnen. Prices will depend on customer needs, he said.
The program will also offer training, marketing and licensing information. Companies interested in the program can go to Intel's Web site at http://www.intel.com/isp for more information.
In response to the growing Internet economy, technology giants IBM and Hewlett-Packard have already begun programs to develop Internet access for companies, said Andrew Noronha, an analyst with Californian market research firm Dataquest.
"IBM in the last two years has re-branded itself as the 'e-business provider', and Hewlett-Packard recently announced a new e-business initiative," Noronha said. '''They are all re-engineering their marketing strategy to capture the growing ISP market." http://www.intel.com