August. 08, 2002

AirZip Looks To Send Out Positive Image To Verticals

By Michele Pepe, CRN

Cupertino, Calif., AirZip is helping solution providers deliver speedy imaging systems to customers. The aptly named company, which expects about $1.5 million in revenue by year's end, is selling its AirZip image accelerator through systems integrators and developers, and targeting several verticals in the process.

"We're choosing partners that work heavily in the verticals we emphasize," said Lee Bauman, president and CEO of AirZip, based here. "And if they find any other areas they'd like to sell into, we won't hesitate to help them do that."

The AirZip software makes it possible to send, receive and share images by delivering Web access and imaging applications over any wireless or dial-up connection, Bauman said. AirZip compresses images to speed delivery and reduce memory requirements by up to 400 percent. The software works with Microsoft IIS, IBM WebSphere and Apache, and with most operating systems, he said.

"With AirZip, people get fast access to rich media, to visual data that helps them do their jobs effectively," Bauman said. "We're talking about things like PowerPoint presentations, schematics, drawings, workflow diagrams and animation."

Marshall & Associates, a solution provider focusing on application development and database design for the geographic information system (GIS) space, is in talks with AirZip about using the technology in conjunction with that of ESRI, a Redlands, Calif.-based vendor of GIS software and longtime Marshall partner.

"A lot of our customers, many of them government agencies, use GIS technology to maintain their infrastructures," said Rhett Harman, technical services manager at Marshall, Olympia, Wash. "They can use GIS software to edit street maps or to do an analysis of a water-main network."

For those customers, which in many cases are requesting large image files from a server, AirZip can significantly boost the speed at which maps and diagrams are delivered, Harman said. Bauman points to several other verticals in which speedier image delivery can give customers a competitive edge.

In the financial services sector, employees can download stock charts and payment records quickly and easily, whether to a desktop, laptop or PDA. Insurance appraisers can visit accident sites, take pictures and get feedback by sending images electronically to the home office. And at construction sites, managers can mark up building plans on-screen and send them to the architect for approval, all without getting into a car or picking up a phone, Bauman said.

Other vertical markets well-suited for AirZip include health care and utilities, Bauman said, adding that the company is steadily building its user base through integrators and VARs. Current AirZip customers include Laguna Beach City, Calif.; Standard Charter Bank; and Cabell County, W.Va. "We test our products for 'integratability,' but we don't do any integration work ourselves," Bauman said. "We work 100 percent through the channel."

Other AirZip partners include IBM, which has been promoting the company's accelerator for WebSphere, and Invisix, a subsidiary of Motorola that provides solutions to communications service providers and resells AirZip's products and services worldwide.