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iOS, Android application From Verizon, Zipit allows secure messaging in health care

Zipit Wireless has launched its Zipit Confirm secure-messaging app for iOS and Android that is fitting for use by physicians and health care staff. The company also improved its Zipit Now handheld with VOIP capabilities on Verizon's network.

Zipit, a provider of wireless connectivity for mobile devices, has released an application called Zipit Confirm that lets doctors and clinicians connect using secure messaging. The app contain the ability to make voice over IP (VOIP) calls, a feature not present in its original platform, called Enterprise Critical Messaging Solution, introduced at the 2011 Healthcare Information and Management Systems (HIMSS) conference.

The platform now merges cloud-based connectivity through its Remote Administration Portal with the Zipit Now wireless handheld and Zipit Confirm smartphone app for Android and Apple iOS.

Along with the new app, Verizon will supply VOIP connectivity for the existing Zipit Now mobile handheld. "It's a really vigorous way to provide critical messaging, whether it's in health care or one of similar industries," Jeff Pierson, product manager for vertical solutions at Verizon Enterprise Solutions, told the media

Verizon and Zipit publicizedthe new Zipit Confirm app and VOIP upgrade for the Zipit Now handheld on July 12. Zipit's platform brings critical messages within 10 seconds, according to the company.

Features of both the application and the Zipit wireless device include multiple priority level pages, continuous alerts similar to a pager and secure two-way communications with users of the Zipit mobile app and other IP devices.

The mobile app enables users to send Short Message Service (SMS) texts though a dedicated ZText number and logs interactions in the Zipit cloud platform.

With the addition of VOIP, Zipit Now turns into a unified communications platform that can handle paging, secure chat, SMS and voice. Clinicians can also place calls over managed WiFi. Zipit VOIP works with enterprise PBX and cloud-based PBX with Session Initiation Protocol (SIP).

Having the messaging features available only on a Zipit device limited the appeal for doctors to use the messaging service because they did not want to carry in their pockets more than one device, according to Michael Vitale, vice president of sales for Zipit.

"By now, having the ability to leverage their existing smartphones and not have to carry a pager anymore, plus have many more features and accountability, they are absolutely ready to adopt and use the technology," Vitale told reporters. "Before, if the doctors didn't have a smartphone application, they wouldn't promote the app internally."

In addition to health care, Zipit's messaging platform has been in use in education, manufacturing and hospitality, Vitale noted afterwards.

Providing a separate Zipit device to everyone in a hospital's transport group and organizations was too expensive, according to Vitale. With the new app for iOS and Android, hospital workers can use their own handhelds, furthering growth in the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend in every workplace.