Ericsson announced it will acquire Swedish messaging technology developer Mobeon in a move that could bring new integrated messaging services to more users.
Mobeon offers IP-based voice and video mail software to telecommunications equipment vendors. Prior to the acquisition, Ericsson owned 21% of Mobeon, which developed components of Ericsson's IP messaging product.
The deal will help Ericsson speed up the development of new messaging offerings that will allow operators to integrate advanced messaging applications such as video mail with existing applications including SMS (Short Message Service) and voice mail, Ericsson said.
Video mail allows a user to record a short video clip, typically using a mobile phone, and send it just like a voice mail message. Mobeon's technology also allows end users to publish such messages on blogs, forward video mail to others and opt to forward and receive video messages via email.
Mobeon also enables unified messaging, which allows users to access a variety of types of messages such as voice mail and email in different ways including via email or over the telephone. The company also offers technology for voice short messaging, a service that some vendors think will become popular in markets with many users who cannot read or write text messages.
Mobeon has 130 employees in Sweden and the UK who will join Ericsson's multimedia group. The companies did not disclose terms of the deal.
The Mobeon acquisition follows a string of other high-profile buys from Ericsson. In December, Ericsson agreed to purchase Redback Networks, the developer of carrier routers, for £1bn. On Friday, Ericsson will announce whether its bid for Tandberg Television, a company with technology that would boost Ericsson's IPTV product offering, has been successful. In February, Ericsson bought fiber access company Entrisphere.