UK bank Abbey National is to replace its Netscape iPlanet Internet infrastructure with IBM's WebSphere software platform.
The new e-commerce infrastructure will enhance its online capabilities to reach customers through multiple channels including WAP phones and digital TV, says the bank. Abbey National says it is confident that the personalisation and analytical features of the new service will significantly cut costs, attract new customers and cut down on administration.
The bank also plans to voice enable its core banking applications. Additionally, it plans to gain a deeper level of understanding of its e-commerce strategy through WebSphere Site Analyser.
Abbey's Internet retail bank will be the first division to migrate from Netscape's iPlanet to IBM's WebSphere at the beginning of next year. At a later date, the bank plans to update its systems across the whole of its banking operations. Systems integration, and connectivity with Abbey's existing BEA Tuxedo system, will take place with additional software from IBM partner Prolifics.
Bill Gibbons, director of group technology services at Abbey National, says: "We chose IBM's WebSphere software because its level of flexibility and its overall performance was more attractive than other options reviewed...With WebSphere we will be providing our customers with a better banking experience all round, through new functions such as content personalisation and new voice-enabled applications."