Netscape and Sun face product overlaps

Netscape and Sun face product overlaps

Although the logistics of the agreement between America Online and Sun Microsystems seem to be ironed out, the impact of the deal on these companies' product plans and customers remains to be seen.

The core of the three-year development and marketing agreement between AOL and Sun lies in the joint development of software designed to help companies and ISPs engage in Internet commerce.

But several other server products from Netscape, including its application server, e-mail server, and directory server, overlap with Sun products, causing leading Netscape customers to wonder what will happen.

"Sun has to explain how they will use (Sun's application server) NetDynamics and (Netscape's application server) Kiva," said Larry Perlstein, principal analyst at Dataquest.

The companies also have competing messaging and directory servers.

No definitive product plans will be delivered until the final stages of the acquisition are completed, most likely March or April.

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