San Ramon, CA (PRWEB) February 3, 2005
NetInformer, a leading mobile media company, today launched Xtra!, the first comprehensive wireless system designed to deliver newspaper content and services to mobile phones. The Xtra! service provides a strategic and easy-to-implement wireless link to readers that complements newspapers' current print and online offerings. NetInformer also announced The Bakersfield Californian will be the first newspaper to deploy Xtra!, offering its readers access to daily local content via their cell phones.
NetInformer's Xtra! allows newspaper readers to sign up for a variety of alerts and information through the text messaging function of nearly all mobile phones, regardless of wireless carrier. Beginning February 1st, readers of The Bakersfield Californian can sign up for the free service on the paper's Web site, http://www.bakersfield.com. Readers can choose to receive local, regional, and world news headlines; customized weather and local sports updates; and personalized classified ads searches, such as employment, rentals, merchandise, and yard sales. Users can select to receive news alerts 'as it happens' or receive information at a specific time each day.
"Many information portals are starting to offer mobile services," said Tim Repsher, technology manager, The Bakersfield Californian. "Text messaging will be the platform of choice for content with relevance for the ever increasing mobile audience, and help us reach younger readers. NetInformer's Xtra! application allows us - in a smart and effective way - to deliver critical news and on-the-spot information anywhere at anytime to our readers' cell phones."
"Newspapers will play a significant role in shaping the evolving future of wireless services and are primed to capitalize on the mobile medium," said Greg Pinter, CEO, NetInformer. "Outlets such as The Bakersfield Californian have inherent competitive advantages, such as extensive news gathering resources in their readership area, localized reporting and community knowledge, and a street-level sales force. The Xtra! service will further position the paper as the most trusted source for local news and information, and bring it closer to readers through the wireless channel."
Developed with significant input from The Bakersfield Californian, Xtra! offers several options for newspapers to generate additional income through the mobile channel. Newspapers can offer free basic alerts such as news, weather, and local events, while benefiting from paid advertiser sponsorship of these services. Xtra! enables newspapers to charge micopayments for custom content, including movie and restaurant reviews, travel guides, or pay for an advertised meal special with their phone right at the restaurant.
NetInformer can integrate with a newspapers database to charge transactions to subscriber credit cards or charge payments to a user's phone bill with Premium SMS fees. In addition, Xtra! gives newspapers the power to interact dynamically with readers with real-time polls, quizzes, sponsored messages and contests, and participatory journalism blogs. Xtra! also provides for future wireless services such as location-based services, mapping and multi-media content with news and classified ad photos.
Wireless phone users should note that standard text messaging fees will apply, and consult their carriers' plan.
NetInformer enables the delivery of 2-way text and digital data to mobile phones for information, advertising, entertainment, and interactive television and radio. The company offers connectivity across all North American carrier networks with access to more than 170 million wireless subscribers. For more information about mobile media services or specific newspaper Xtra! package, visit http://www.netinformer.com.
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