This was indeed a surprising move. iAnywhere had a competing product for the OneBridge platform of Extended Systems. From what I’ve heard the iAnywhere product lacked stability and scalability. Also as Forrester mentiones, solutions like OneBridge and othe midlleware / gateway type mobility solutions face a lot of cometition because platform vendors such as IBm and Microsoft are offering native solutions
The mobile software market continues its slow consolidation with the acquisition of Extended Systems by iAnywhere Solutions, the mobile technologies subsidiary of Sybase. iAnywhere gains a platform for integrating its diverse product set, a deeper European presence, and a clear channel to device manufacturers for embedded software sales. At the same time, iAnywhere has promised that none of its existing products goes away. The upshot? The deal won’t negatively impact customers of either company, but it gives iAnywhere — already the leading vendor of individual mobile products — additional power to compete head-to-head with more integrated mobile middleware stacks like IBM WebSphere Everyplace Suite (WES) and Intellisync. That will be highly valuable as mobile technologies move to more of an enterprise buy.