Phone.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:PHCM) today introduced MyPhone - a Mobile Portal Platform enabling network operators to rapidly enter the Internet economy by offering their own branded portal sites for wireless subscribers. The MyPhone service includes a robust set of mobility-centric information services and applications for both PC's and microbrowser-capable wireless phones. MyPhone provides a framework for aggregation, presentation, personalization, and delivery of Internet based content and wireless-network integrated applications. Southern LINC, as announced separately today, has licensed the MyPhone service for commercial use. Other wireless network operators including Clearnet and Sprint PCS will be conducting trials of the MyPhone service beginning this Fall. Phone.com will be demonstrating the MyPhone service this week at the PCS'99 show in New Orleans (Booth #1826).
"We believe that the MyPhone platform will create tremendous value for wireless network operators," said Alain Rossmann, Chairman and CEO of Phone.com. "As a software infrastructure supplier we are creating an Internet platform for mobile operators around the world. Now as a services supplier, we enable operators to rapidly and easily implement applications and services that leverage their direct relationship with wireless subscribers."
The MyPhone service is a complementary offering to Phone.com's market-leading WAP-compatible UP.Link Server Suite. The offering of this new service reinforces Phone.com's strategy to lead the convergence of mobile telephony and the Internet. MyPhone is expected to accelerate consumer adoption of WAP-based services by enabling network operators to rapidly rollout compelling new information services and applications. MyPhone is a turnkey OEM service offering that will provide network operators a path to rapidly launch their own Internet portals to accelerate adoption of WAP services. MyPhone is a hosted solution for network operators that will emphasize the operators' brands to enable them to strengthen customer loyalty through their own Internet presence. Portals deployed by network operators under their own brands will be co-branded as "Powered by Phone.com".
"The introduction of MyPhone reinforces for network operators that Phone.com is a leader providing innovative products and solutions to the wireless industry," said Alan Black, Chief Financial Officer of Phone.com. "We expect MyPhone will provide Phone.com with modest sources of revenues this fiscal year. By broadening the scope of the business, we also anticipate that MyPhone will strengthen our competitive position by encouraging network operators to deploy Phone.com's core infrastructure products."
MyPhone will include an extensive collection of Internet information services including news feeds, stock and financial information databases, powerful email, address book, and calendar functionality. The MyPhone service can be customized to permit network operators to offer their own differentiated look and feel, customer care functionality, and other unique features and mobility-centric applications.
"A crucial factor for success of wireless Internet is the ultimate end-user value and powerful yet simple user interface," said Bob Egan, Research Director - Mobile and Wireless for Gartner Group. "Phone.com's experience in phone user interface design will be key to making MyPhone services simple and powerful."
Portals based on the MyPhone service will allow wireless network operators to strengthen their subscriber relationship. By providing information services and applications that are optimized for use by mobile subscribers on both their microbrowser-enabled phones and their PC's, network operators can build added layers of value and customer commitment to their service. Through MyPhone, operators will be able to create wireless-network integrated applications such as visualvoicemail. With visual voicemail subscribers can view the contents of their voicemail box, including details about each message's time, length, and sender. Applications such as this greatly increase the value delivered to subscribers and consequently their brand loyalty. MyPhone manages delivery of Internet content and applications in multiple modes-on the screen of phones using a WAP microbrowser such as the Phone.com UP.Browser, and on any PC Internet browser.
"This is a great example of the type of service offerings that will help the wireless data market take off," said Bill Davidson, Vice President of Wireless Data Sales & Marketing for Bell Atlantic Mobile. "This service is in line with Bell Atlantic Mobile's vision of providing products and services for customers to be take full advantage of the convergence of wireless and the Internet, like our industry-leading wireless Internet and email services." "Phone.com has long been a leader in creating the applications and infrastructure that will enable a 'wireless web' experience." Said Mike Ozburn, Vice President & General Manager, Nextel Online. "We look forward to working with Phone.com as they introduce capabilities like those offered by MyPhone."
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