Datatel Shows Off Mobile App
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Higher ed vendor Datatel gave a sneak peek of its campus-oriented mobile application at Educause 2009 last week. Datatel Mobile, built in conjunction with DubMeNow, provides users with smart device access to personal class schedules, class assignments, class rosters, events, announcements, and documents. There's a student, faculty, and staff directory and contact information for campus security, the campus health center, and other offices. DubMeNow provides a mechanism for users to exchange information that's saved to the mobile device's address book.
Datatel Mobile will be available between January and March 2010 for Apple iPhone and iPod Touch, Research in Motion BlackBerry, and Google Android devices. The company said it expects to add support for Windows Mobile, Nokia Symbian, and Palm Pre in the fourth quarter of 2010. To promote institutional affinity, user interfaces on the devices can be customized and branded by each college or university.
The new application lets users exchange contact information, including e-mail, phone, address, Facebook and LinkedIn profiles, and IM from phone to phone; receive automatic address book updates whenever contacts update their data; access information about public and private campus events and about events limited to specific groups such as students, faculty, and staff; receive personalized notifications such as security alerts and library past-due notices; personalize newsfeeds from the institution; and follow a GPS-enabled campus map to classroom buildings and other facilities.
"The percentage of our population using non-voice data applications on their mobile phone is growing at an astounding rate," said John Speer, Datatel president and CEO. "These constituents will expect higher education institutions to keep pace with this valuable service delivery platform. In working with DubMeNow, we are extending the dynamic user experience of our products and putting it in the hands, quite literally, of our clients' constituents. This new mobile user interface will provide unequaled and easy access to information--whether it's a course opening, admission status, test score, transcript request, or contact update--anywhere there's a cell phone signal."
"The DubMeNow and Datatel partnership gives colleges and universities across the country the ability to connect hundreds of thousands of students in an innovative manner," said Manoj Ramnani, DubMeNow CEO. "DubMeNow and Datatel are at the forefront of a transformation taking place in the way people of all ages are communicating because of the anytime, anywhere nature of wireless communications."
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.