Software vendors beef up XML functionality

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In a further bid to beef up its .Net strategy, Microsoft is planning to embed web services into the next release of its Office application suite.

The company is said to be planning an optional subscription version tied to Web services based on XML, which will likely include online calendaring and collaboration features. Another proposed web service would be to provide customers with Web-based e-mail which could connect to multiple services and link back to Outlook.

No pricing details are available, but customers would most likely either buy Office and pay for the Web components separately on a subscription basis, or license both pieces for an annual fee.

Meanwhile Oracle is hoping to bolster its flagging database revenues by releasing a new version of 9i with additional XML functionality. Oracle 9i release 2 will be available on Solaris, Windows, Linux, HP-UX, AIX and Tru64.

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