UK LAUNCH FOR LEADING EUROPEAN MOBILE INTERNET
Added: (Mon Dec 11 2000)
Pressbox (Press Release) -
Aladdino (www.aladdino.com), the leading network-independent, European mobile Internet portal launches in the UK today with a range of free-to-access business and lifestyle information channels available on both WAP and PDA platforms.
Cyrille Railliet, Aladdino’s VP Business Development commented: “Aladdino is the first mobile portal to successfully answer users’ clear preference for localised, personalised and highly current information that is available on both WAP and PDA platforms.”
In addition to its unique ability to deliver information on either WAP or PDA platform, Aladdino also differs from all the other emerging mobile portals by shunning their mass-market, consumerist approach to concentrate purely on providing timely and specific information for the business community.
The initial line-up of information channels available through Aladdino reflects this and includes CityJobs, Ents24, Urbuz, Sportal, F1Live, RallyLive, World Soccer News, Golf Course Guide, Hardens restaurant guides, WineDine, Chateaux & Hotel de France, Internet Content, Updesk, 0800Taxi, Online Weather and Gabooh. Many of the channels are already fully e-commerce enabled for Aladdino's PalmOS users including Leaping Salmon, LastMinute, Whittards and TravelPrice. The company plans to expand its service to deliver a choice of approximately 80 business-related channels by the end of Q.1, 2001.
Aladdino has also announced that it intends to offer a m-commerce service for WAP-phone users, a portfolio channel for users to track their shares and investments, and a statement channel for bank or credit/loyalty card accounts by the end of Q.2, 2001.
The launch of Aladdino in the UK is being supported by a major PR campaign through Mulberry PR, an affiliate marketing campaign and a £500,000 online advertising campaign which commences with banner ads on business-oriented sites including bloomberg.co.uk, the-times.co.uk, timeout.com, skysports.com and the business section of yahoo.co.uk.
Information available through Aladdino is held in XML format on the company’s own servers giving users quick and direct “one request” access to their chosen content. This contrasts with the lengthy and complex process of following a series of links to content providers’ unhomogeneous sites which characterizes other mobile portals. PDA users also have full off-line access to their chosen information channels.
Drawing on 18 months experience of providing mobile portals in Europe, Aladdino's UK service has several more key user benefits. These include clear pagination and a layout that is purpose-designed for WAP-phones and PDA’s smaller screens, easy navigation architecture, the ability to bookmark favourite pages and a search engine/keyword facility that is available for all channels.
To access Aladdino information services, first-time users must log on to www.aladdino.com where they will be offered free registration and selection of which Aladdino information services they would like to receive. Set-up of the service for either WAP-phone or handheld PDA then takes less than 5 minutes to complete. Subsequently, users update their selected information channels as frequently as they wish.
For content partners, the company’s XML back-end technology means that the addition of a channel to the Aladdino portal can be implemented within minutes simply by providing information in a tab-delimited text file and making it available on an agreed URL. After this initial process, information then can be updated as often as desired by the content partner in a zero-maintenance process.
Aladdino realises the potential of the mobile Internet by providing a comprehensive range of information, entertainment and news services to handheld devices and Internet-enabled phones.
Aladdino was founded in December 1999 in Paris by Yvon Corcia (President & CEO), Eric Brun
(VP Engineering) and Cyrille Railliet (VP Business Developement) with funding from the leading French
VCs I-Source and SPEF (Banque Populaire Group) plus international backing from IGN Group. In France,
where Aladdino was the first true mobile Internet portal, the company remains the clear leader in existing
user numbers and acquistion growth rates. European partners include Palm, Handspring, Microsoft, HP,
Nokia, Ericsson, Motorola, Phone.com, Telefonica, and France Telecom.