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IBM launches enhanced mobile services offering

A worker is pictured behind a logo at the IBM stand on the CeBIT computer fair in Hanover February 26, 2011. REUTERS/Tobias Schwarz
A worker is pictured behind a logo at the IBM stand on the CeBIT computer fair in Hanover February 26, 2011. REUTERS/Tobias Schwarz

(Reuters) - International Business Machines unveiled its expanded mobile strategy on Thursday in an effort to gain an advantage over rivals amid a proliferation of devices such as smartphones and tablets.

The technology services company will offer customers a portfolio of products for security, device management as well as analytics and application development, the company said.

Using what IBM calls MobileFirst, "businesses can now streamline everything from the management of employee's mobile devices, to the creation of a new mobile commerce app", the company said.

Lopez Research analyst Maribel Lopez said any company who wanted to succeed in the future needed to be strong in mobile.

"This is critical for IBM because the future of computing is based on a couple of technologies: cloud, mobile and big data," she said.

"If IBM can actually educate the market that it has a pretty comprehensive (mobile) suite, that positions them really well," she said.

Currently, only German business software maker SAP was closest in offering a comparable comprehensive mobile strategy, Lopez added.

IBM has made 10 acquisitions since 2006 to boost its mobile offering, most recently TeaLeaf and Worklight.

TeaLeaf is a provider of mobile analytics and Worklight is maker of development and management software for tablets and smartphones.

(Reporting By Nicola Leske; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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