Starfish Software

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Starfish Software
  • 1998–2003: Subsidiary of Motorola
  • 2003–2006: Subsidiary of Pumatech, Inc. (Intellisync)
  • 2006–2008: Subsidiary of Nokia
IndustryWireless software
Founded1994; 27 years ago (1994)
HeadquartersSanta Cruz, California, U.S.
Key people

Starfish Software was founded in 1994 by Philippe Kahn and Sonia Lee, as a spin-off from the Simplify business unit from Borland and Kahn's severance from Borland. It was located in Santa Cruz, California.

Starfish developed intellectual property for device synchronization, especially for wireless devices. TrueSync was the first over-the-air synchronization system. Starfish was acquired by Motorola for $325 million in 1998.[1] The outspoken founding couple founded another company, LightSurf, in the same year, to develop mobile phone photograph technology.[2]

In 2000, the company helped start the SyncML Initiative to standardize synchronization communication protocols.[3] In March 2003, Starfish was acquired by Pumatech in San Jose, California, which was headed by turn-around CEO Woodson Hobbs.[4] Pumatech later changed its name to Intellisync, and was acquired by Nokia in 2005.[5]


  1. ^ "Motorola to Acquire Starfish Software Inc". Press release. Motorola. July 14, 1998. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
  2. ^ Bob Parks (October 2000). "Wired Magazine, The Big Picture - Borland International Inc.'s Philippe Kahn". Retrieved August 26, 2013.
  3. ^ "SyncML: The new era in synchronization". Original web site. Archived from the original on April 7, 2000. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
  4. ^ "Pumatech, Inc. Acquires Motorola Subsidiary Starfish Software". Press release. Nokia. March 30, 2003. Archived from the original on December 27, 2005. Retrieved August 26, 2013.
  5. ^ "Nokia to extend leadership in enterprise mobility with acquisition of Intellisync". Press release. November 16, 2005. Archived from the original on August 19, 2009. Retrieved August 26, 2013.