Hilgraeve Inc., a privately held software company based just south of Detroit in Monroe, Michigan, is a long-time leader in meeting the mission-critical communication needs of business. Hilgraeve’s data communications software and services enable businesses to become faster and more competitive through the use of electronic communications. Hilgraeve provides reliable, powerful and easy-to-use communications solutions.
Hilgraeve, Inc. was founded in 1980 to develop and market technological products. Hilgraeve’s first product was a bicycle speedometer, introduced in 1981. That led to the manufacture of proximity sensors in 1982. Though sensors continued to be a source of revenue for more than a decade, Hilgraeve’s focus on microcomputers and telecommunications eventually established the company as a technology leader in the field of computer communications software.
The original founders in 1980 were John Hile, Matt Gray, and Bob Everett. The company’s name was derived from the first three letters of each of the founder’s last names.
In 1985, Hilgraeve was awarded a patent for technology for coin validation in vending machines. A year later, that technology was sold to Mars Money Systems, a division of Mars Candy Bar Company. Revenue from the sale was used to bankroll aggressive expansion in Hilgraeve’s software development and marketing, which had been gaining momentum throughout the early ‘80s.
Hilgraeve released its first computer software in 1982, to enable Heath 8-bit computers to communicate through modems and telephone lines. In 1985, Hilgraeve released HyperACCESS for IBM PC and PC compatible computers with DOS. HyperACCESS won critical acclaim immediately, and has remained one of the top-rated communications programs ever since.
Competition heated up in the early 1990s and Hilgraeve would compete in the online communications software market against the likes of Datastorm’s ProComm line of software, and Delrina’s WinComm.
In 1994 IBM was the first major OS vendor to bundle one of Hilgraeve’s products with a 32-bit OS by including a copy of the firm’s terminal program with OS/2 Warp 3.0, and it was named “HyperACCESS Lite.” One year later Microsoft followed suit and licensed a low-end version known as HyperTerminal (essentially a “Lite” version) for use in their set of communications utilities. It was initially bundled with Windows 95, and subsequently all versions of Windows up to and including Windows XP.
Hilgraeve was an early entrant into devising anti-virus software, and received patents for its HyperGuard product, designed to prevent viruses from being downloaded while connected to an online service.
In 1997, Hilgraeve sued both Symantec and McAfee for infringement. According to the Dow Jones, it is “the changing nature of computer security threats, and of competition in the Internet-security software “arena” that has persuaded Symantec to buy the patent.
In the late 90s, Hilgraeve developed DropChute Enterprise, which allowed businesses to cut costs, save time, and gain a competitive edge by integrating secure, instant file delivery into workflow processes that involve exchanging documents or files with customers, vendors or employees or remote sites. For more than 12 years Hilgraeve sold and supported the DropChute suite, retiring the product in late 2011.
Later, Hilgraeve created HyperSend, a secure delivery platform that provides fast and reliable file transfer through the Internet. It was as easy to use as email, and HyperSend required only a web browser to send files of any size with confidence. HyperSend was secure, reliable, low-cost, fast, trackable document delivery that relied on secure data transfer protocols used by Web browsers (HTTPS and SSL). Healthcare companies, banks, credit unions, and insurance companies were early users of HyperSend. Shortly after, Hilgraeve started working on furthering patient data transfers with another software, HyperBridge. In early 2008, Hilgraeve sold HyperSend and HyperBridge to Covisint, then a division of Compuware Inc., which would make Covisint the world’s largest on-demand collaboration platform for lab and prescription data sharing.
Hilgraeve’s software products have been used by thousands of PC users, and include both general-purpose and remote control communications software packages for PCS with DOS, Windows, and OS/2 operating environments. Hilgraeve has been committed to providing products and services that simplify data communications among PC users world-wide.
Hilgraeve is now best known for its HyperTerminal Private Edition as well as the HyperACCESS programs.