PlanetRx, IBM take shopping service to handhelds

Online pharmacy PlanetRx teams with IBM to build a remote shopping service.

Online pharmacy PlanetRx has teamed with IBM to build a remote shopping service.

As first reported by CNET News.com, San Francisco-based PlanetRx said it will make available a free software application that lets users of Palm handheld devices quickly order products from PlanetRx using wireless or standard Internet connections. The software will be available by month's end as a free download from PlanetRx's Web site.

For IBM, the new service provides a showcase for its Web technology. IBM is providing the infrastructure hardware and software for the service, including its RS/6000 and Netfinity servers, DB2 Universal Database software, Websphere application server software and other technology to translate and reformat Web page information to properly display on handheld devices.

PlanetRx is providing the product vision, content, commerce and customer support for the shopping application. By combining PlanetRx's secure online service with IBM's pervasive computing technologies, the two companies are trying to push more Web-based applications to smart devices, many of which are now limited to PC Web access.

Future offerings will provide PlanetRx's full line of products, including prescription medications, and features such as PlanetRx's prescription reminder.

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