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(Nikkei BP Group)

(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)

  • Oki, Compaq, Globeset Tie Up on E-settlement System
  • September 9, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd., Compaq Computer KK and Globeset Inc. are teaming up to develop and market products for electronic shopping systems.
    The new products will comply with Secure Electronic Transaction (SET) standards for credit settlement on the Internet.

    Oki will sell its EC software solution called "Infomerce System Series" that will include Compaq's SET1.0-compliant electronic settlement software, "iTP Payment Solution." Oki will also sell "Payment Gateway," its iTP Payment Solution for financial institutions, to credit card companies, and it will provide system integration services.

    The "iTP Payment Solution" is an SET-compliant product that Compaq OEMs from Globeset of the United States. Globeset is planning to work with Oki and Compaq to localize iTP Payment Solution and to implement Japan Payment Option to meet Japan's unique settlement practices.

    Oki's hardware will be primarily sold with this system. But Compaq's hardware will also be sold on a case-by-case basis. This online shopping system will be put on sale on Oct. 1, with a minimum system price of 1 million yen to 1.5 million yen (US$7,360-$11,040).

    Recently, quite a few SET-based EC software products have been released to the market. They include "NCIS" (temporary name) from Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. and Microsoft Co., Ltd. of Japan, "DOSET station" from Toyo Information Systems Co., Ltd., Microsoft, Compaq Computer and Softbank Corp., and other products. These products are relatively low priced. But the total cost, including system implementation, would exceed 10 million yen.

    The new shopping system that the three companies are offering could be less than 1 million yen for a simple electronic shop that would be set up for a price of 30,000 yen, said Toshinao Takeuchi, general manager of Oki's Advanced Financial System Division Platform Development Department.

    The penetration of SET standards into the present Japanese market, however, is not significant because of distribution costs and installation issues of SET-based client software known as "Wallet."

    Credit card companies have to mail out CD-ROMs containing "Wallet" to users, since cryptography export restrictions by Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry prohibit them from downloading the software.

    Globeset announced "ServerWallet," which will provide an individual Wallet function. It would normally reside on the client PC, but this is on the server side. With this system, it will not be necessary to distribute Wallet to users, and upgrades of Wallet will be easy and inexpensive, the company said.

    The company has already provided a trial version to some partner companies. The official release is scheduled for Nov. 1.

    The introduction of "ServerWallet" in Japan will be up to the partners. "We are suggesting that some financial institutions introduce it," Oki's Takeuchi said. Some may try to use ServerWallet within this year.

    (Nikkei Multimedia)

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    Updated: Tue Sep 8 19:02:26 1998 PDT