3 Group and Yahoo! today announced a global agreement in which Yahoo! will provide its portfolio of rich mobile services to 3 worldwide. Under the terms of the agreement, the two companies will work together to offer key Internetservices such as Yahoo! Search, Yahoo! Mobile Web, Yahoo! Messenger Mail, and Yahoo! Go for Mobile on 3’s networks around the world. The companies also plan to make additional Yahoo! services available to 3 subscribers in the future.
This agreement breaks new ground in the convergence of the online and mobile experience by bringing some of the world’s most popular online content and services to mobile broadband handsets. The first services will launch in the UK this summer, with the intention to launch thereafter in 3 Group’s key European and Asia-Pacific markets including Italy, Ireland, Austria, Sweden, Denmark and Australia and on Hutchison Telecommunications International in Hong Kong and India. The companies will jointly market the services on the Yahoo! and 3 networks.
For 3, this is another step in a series of landmark deals that will open up a range of no-nonsense Internet-based services to its global customers and will drive customer acquisition, usage and traffic on 3’s mobile networks. For Yahoo!, the relationship marks its first strategic alliance with a global 3G mobile broadband network operator.
The arrangement will use Yahoo!’ expertise in transcoding online content for mobile devices to allow 3 customers to surf the entire world wide web from their handsets for the first time. 3 will also now offer its customers full access to Yahoo! Search for both on and off portal search on mobile phones. The range of Yahoo! services, from search to photos to ringtones and graphics, will be accessible to subscribers either via the Internet browser on the handset or through client applications such as Yahoo! Ready or Yahoo! Go for Mobile on select devices. Country specific services will be made available in line with the phased roll out of the product portfolio.
Key services that will be available to consumers on 3’s global network include:
Yahoo! Search (Web and Image)
• Quickly access full Internet Search including the ability to find information about weather, stock quotes and dictionary definitions
• Search for and view billions of images
Popular Communications Services
• Including Yahoo! Mail
• Yahoo! Messenger
• Yahoo! Address Book
• Yahoo! Calendar
• Yahoo! Photos
• News, sports scores, stock tickers, financial updates and more through a direct connection to Yahoo!’s Mobile Web
• Mobile games
• marketplace – the latest ring tones and graphics
Christian Salbaing, Managing Director Europe Telecommunications at 3 Group, told Mobile business Magazine:
"This relationship isn’t just about us buying more content to put on our portal, its about a deep engagement between our two companies to bring some of the world’s most popular Internet services and content to 3’s networks. Our customers and Yahoo! users in our territories will be excited to access familiar Yahoo! services on 3’s 3G mobile handsets and other broadband devices. Convergence between the Internet and mobile has been much talked about but this deal will really make it happen. We are delighted to partner with Yahoo! to leverage their knowledge of the Internet space, technical expertise and content and service portfolio for our customers. It is going to be fun."
Geraldine Wilson, Vice President, Connected Life, Yahoo! Europe, added:
"This announcement is another major milestone in Yahoo!’s strategy to extend our user experience ‘beyond the browser’ and across other platforms. 3 customers have already demonstrated their appetite for data services and will now be able to feed that appetite by accessing their favourite Yahoo! services via instantly familiar icons on 3 handsets. This arrangement gives us a new opportunity to take Yahoo! content and services to even more potential users – especially those that might not have ready or frequent access to the Internet via a PC."