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Channel.com Briefs: Palm, Telstra, Aust Post

Channel.com Briefs: Palm, Telstra, Aust Post

Palm announces new local content partnersHandheld device vendor Palm has partnered with a group of Australian content providers for the development of customised sites for Palm users.

The 50 content partners, including the likes of Freedom Technologies, Pacific Access and Sofcom, have created small "Web clipping" applications, which are basically focussed Web browsers for one particular site. These content partners have each written a simple application which optimises the data on their site and eliminates unnecessary graphic files when browsed with a Palm device.

The Web clipping applications are bundled free with Palm's Mobile Internet Kit (at $59.95-$89.95), which gives users access to an e-mail application, a WAP browser, and an SMS messaging application. The kit is distributed through Tech Pacific and Advanced Portal Technologies and available in Palm's usual retail channel. There are also several hundred Web-clipping applications of US content available for download from Palm's Web site.

Telstra and Australia Post enter into $100M swapTelstra and Australia Post have announced a series of three-year contracts worth over $100 million which involve the swapping of logistics and processing services for telecommunications services.

Telstra will continue to provide the communications infrastructure for Australia Post's operations, including an Internet Protocol network for Australia Post's business applications, in return for receipt and order processing, warehousing, distribution and returns and online order processing and tracking of retail products. Telstra joins several Internet companies such as Coles Myer Online, David Jones Online and Smartbuy, which signed up with Australia Post for the provision of logistics services at the start of this month.

Analysts predict huge e-commerce growth

A recent IDC survey suggests there is a great deal of opportunity for Web sellers in the greater Asian region, but e-tailers need to concentrate on the needs of the regional community instead of taking too many hints from the American system.

While the Web is becoming mainstream in the US, the IDC survey found Asia's online community is skewed toward young users (80 per cent between 19 and 34) and males (76 per cent).

Only 40 per cent of respondents in the region indicated they had purchased goods online in the last 12 months, but the statistic is slightly higher in Australia than elsewhere in Asia. The main inhibitors remain concerns over credit card fraud, fears of disreputable merchants, and a preference to physically examine product before purchase and a lack of discretionary income.


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