With the aim of replacing the venerable clipboard with a much more versatile handheld device, IBM has updated its Maximo asset management software so that it can be accessed by iPhones and Androids.
The new IBM offering, called Maximo Everyplace, will allow users of the company's maintenance management software to access its basic functionality over a network by way of mobile handset Web browsers.
Facilities managers, maintenance workers and other typical users of Maximo spend a lot of time not in the office, but rather out where the operations actually occur, such as plant floors or service bays. As a result, they must print out service requests and other documentation, and make frequent tips back to the office for updated information and to review new requests.
Users can execute such Maximo tasks as displaying job plans, showing the location of assets, showing the maintenance history, tracking work orders and service requests.
According to IBM, software doesn't need to be installed on the clients. The application can be accessed entirely through the Web browser. Administrators customize the mobile interface using the Maximo Application Designer, allowing them to choose which features can be accessed remotely.
IBM is limiting its availability to the iPhone and Android devices, due to the fact it is based on the Webkit browser engine. It may also work on the Internet Explorer browser, but it will not work on the BlackBerry
One early user of the software, which has been in limited release since January, has been the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, an academic medical center located in Galveston, Texas. There, maintenance personnel must keep track over equipment across 160 different buildings. "This service enables us to log and respond to requests throughout the campus," said David Reynolds, who is the center's director of fixed assets and reliability systems, in a statement.
The IBM Maximo asset manager software allows organizations to keep track of the equipment they own--such as vehicles, buildings or expensive testing equipment--as well as schedule service for these items. The company acquired the software when it purchased MRO Software in 2006.
The software is being offered free on a trial basis.