Exciting array of infotainment content and transactional services awaits Singapore’s i-mode subscribers
Singapore, 14 October 2005 - StarHub, Singapore’s integrated info-communications provider and exclusive i-mode® operator, today announced key collaborations with some of the leading local and international content owners to offer StarHub’s i-mode subscribers quick and easy access to an exciting array of infotainment content and transactional services when i-mode is launched later this year.
With StarHub’s partnerships with a large and diverse group of content providers, StarHub’s customers will have access to an extensive catalogue of lifestyle-driven Internet services adapted specifically for the i-mode platform. These include Bloomberg, eBay South East Asia, Golden Village (GV), MediaCorp TV, MTV Networks Asia, OCBC Bank, SINA, Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), Yahoo! South-East Asia, and ZUJI Singapore, which offer just some of the compelling and relevant content and services that subscribers can enjoy shortly.
“We are the first and only mobile operator in Singapore to adopt i-mode’s open garden approach, and by partnering international and local content providers we will bring a rich array of valuable content and applications to our customers," said Mr Chan Kin Hung, Senior Vice President, Mobile Services, StarHub. "We are very delighted that a large number of top local and international brands sees the benefits of the i-mode business model as we do, and are committed to working with StarHub in bringing mobile users a wide range of high quality infotainment content and transactional services in Singapore.”
At launch, Singapore’s i-mode users will be able to enjoy the convenience and ease of a one-click access to a wide variety of lifestyle content and service offerings from more than 50 partners. These include banking, entertainment, games, news, shopping, sports, information and directories, and travel sites as well as push email services, all integrated on the i-mode menu to allow customers quick and simple accessibility to the content and services that they demand.
“Our i-mode service will be like a mega shopping mall, offering different categories of popular and relevant content and services to meet people’s varied lifestyle needs and preferences. In each category of content or services, there will be several choices for customers to select from. By carefully selecting the types of content, services and partners, we are building this mega shopping mall where each and every partner will synergise and contribute to the success of the mall by attracting more customers to visit it," added Mr Chan.
StarHub will add to the line-up of i-mode sites by continuously aggregating top quality local and international content and services so as to constantly enhance the appeal of the i-mode content portfolio. Customers can also look forward to the advent of innovative and advanced mobile commerce applications designed to simplify their busy lifestyles, so that even non tech-savvy mobile users will find it extremely easy to access the services, such as buying flowers, stock trading or restaurant bookings and more, all on their i-mode mobile phones, besides news, sports and entertainment content.
The i-mode service is provided on an open platform based on de facto Internet standards. It enables content providers to develop or adapt their Internet content and applications quickly for easy-to-use i-mode handsets to reach consumers. There is also minimum start-up investment in the required areas of technological knowledge and expertise. This would also mean that maintaining and enhancing the Internet sites will be hassle-free.
“The i-mode ecosystem is a ready platform for our content partners to reach out to consumers in a timely manner. They will decide on the pricing of their content which will be offered on a monthly subscription basis, and collect up to 85% of the subscription revenue. The i-mode business model favours content providers who, as they generate revenue from content provision, will be able to channel their continued efforts in developing and enhancing their content line-up to attract more subscribers to use their services,” Mr Chan said. “Most importantly, the i-mode handsets are designed in such a way that consumers can access these content easily and the services are more readily available. We believe they will love i-mode's ease-of-use and consistent experience, and will naturally use more of these services on a more frequent basis."
"For its comprehensive range of content and services and with its predictable and user-friendly experience, StarHub is confident that i-mode is set to offer customers an unparalleled mobile experience," enthused Mr Chan.
StarHub is NTT DoCoMo's 14th partner for i-mode services. Other partners are E-Plus, KPN Mobile, Far EasTone, BASE, Bouygues Telecom, Telefonica Moviles, Wind, COSMOTE, Telstra, Cellcom, MTS, O2 UK and O2 Ireland. Already the world's leading mobile Internet service since its introduction in Japan in 1999, i-mode today offers 7,100 official sites worldwide with thousands of applications for the enjoyment of more than 50 million mobile users globally. In Japan, in addition to the official sites, there are more than 93,000 independent i-mode sites.
Bloomberg on StarHub’s i-mode will provide the user with the latest news, financial information and customised financial tools in a single, integrated package. The consumer will be able to analyse a broad range of information across the financial markets and create a personalised portfolio where they can track and see their securities moving every ten minutes. The Bloomberg service has the most comprehensive range of news and data available. It will allow access to all the financial news headlines for Asia, US and Europe and provide updates on indices, currencies and oil prices. There is a clear focus and structure based around the financial markets, defining the Bloomberg on i-mode as an essential tool for every person with an interest in business and economic news.
eBay is the World's online marketplace, and in Singapore it is the most popular online auction site. With eBay Anywhere on i-mode, you'll have round-the-clock access to up to 55 million items around the globe. At the touch of a button, you can immediately login to your eBay account via your mobile phones to place a bid on an item you like. You can also monitor your bids closely by subscribing to the SMS Alert service, which will notify you immediately via SMS when you have been outbid.
Movie lovers in Singapore will soon be able to access real-time movie information on the go, such as movie titles, schedules, synopses, promotions and more, all on an i-mode handset. With StarHub’s i-mode, mobile patrons will be able to make confirmed ticket booking using their credit card, instead of just reserving their seats. Also, for the first time ever, seat selection is available for patrons who can choose their favourite seats when making their ticket bookings from an i-mode handset.
MediaCorp TV’s Unwired is an exciting entertainment news magazine boosted with multimedia for the mobile phone. With the latest entertainment news and a TV guide, there are also downloadable videos and audio clips of exclusive celebrity interviews for StarHub’s i-mode users in Singapore.
StarHub's i-mode subscribers will enjoy the MTV experience with a bouquet of content that includes MTV's Chart Attack downloadable ring tones, exciting wallpapers and even the latest music and entertainment news and live wires. Subscribers can also catch up on the latest local events and take part in fun MTV contests that offer exclusive prizes. The service will gradually evolve towards a richer media experience with music videos and MTV's original programming content.
OCBC Bank offers consumers the convenience of banking via the mobile phone through StarHub’s i-mode. They can check their account balances and latest transactions, transfer funds and even pay bills anytime, anywhere. In addition, they can enjoy exciting credit card offers just by flashing the eVouchers on their phones at participating outlets.
One of the most popular Chinese entertainment news portal in the world, the SINA site ( 新浪网 ) on StarHub’s i-mode will provide breaking news on the entertainment industry, international scenes and sports events within the Chinese community. Targeted at people who are on the go with the thirst for the latest infotainment news and updates in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China, complete with write-ups on celebrities, pictures and exclusive video clips.
SPH is making its flagship titles available on StarHub's i-mode through subscription, with news from The Straits Times, The Business Times, and Lianhe Zaobao. Apart from its own stories, Zaobao will also offer content from other Chinese dailies like Lianhe Wanbao and Shin Min Daily. i-mode users will also have the option of subscribing to SPH Breaking News, which sends users regular email alerts throughout the day, constantly updating them on the latest news from Singapore and around the world.
StarHub’s i-mode allows mobile users to get instantly connected to their Yahoo! ID on their i-mode handsets for quick and simple access to a range of Yahoo! Services, including Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Messenger, Photos and much more. Now you can bring your Yahoo! buddies with you everywhere you go! Yahoo!
Singapore’s i-mode users will be able to book a room from over 60,000 hotels worldwide, check live flight prices from over 400 global airlines and research destination information from over 180 places to go all from ZUJI. So a customer can research, plan and book all their travel itineraries on the ZUJI i-mode service.
The below quotes from some of StarHub’s key i-mode content partners may be used for your article -
eBay South East Asia
We are very pleased to announce our partnership with StarHub to launch eBay Anywhere on StarHub's i-mode platform. The eBay i-mode site enables Singapore users to log in to the world's largest online marketplace, via their mobile phones anytime, anywhere. One of the ways eBay users can also monitor their bids closely is through the push email function on i-mode phones which will notify them immediately when they have been outbid and they can go online immediately to make a counter-bid. This is truly an exciting step. With i-mode, the eCommerce/ mCommerce experience is brought to a whole new level"
Golden Village Multiplex Pte Ltd
"As the latest development in our strategic partnership with StarHub, Golden Village is very excited about the launch of i-mode, as it means that we will be able to expand our booking channels to mobile phones soon. This mode of booking movie tickets is even more convenient than using a computer, and most people have their mobile phones with them all the time (even though they may not be by their computers all the time). Not only are we providing people with a convenient way of booking tickets to watch their favourite movies through StarHub's i-mode handsets, customers are able to choose the particular seats that they want, read movie synopses and participate in movie promotions, all on the go. In the near future, i-mode will also allow the customer to watch movie trailers from his/her mobile phone. What could be easier and more fun?"
Khiew Voon Kwang
Managing Director, Network Programming & Promotions
“As a progressive broadcaster, MediacorpTV sees the need to maintain a connection with the mobile road warriors of today. The mobile device provides the opportunity for subscribers to be in touch with the local entertainment scene and have access to exclusive content in the form of videos, interviews and other rich multimedia content. i-mode provides an excellent platform for us to deliver rich content easily and we’re excited to partner StarHub to launch this revolutionary new mobile Internet experience.”
Vice President, Digital Media
MTV Networks Asia
"MTV is very excited to be part of StarHub's i-mode service in Singapore which comes close on the heels of 'Flux,' the digital entertainment service that Viacom launched in Japan recently. This initiative is yet another avenue for MTV to entertain and reach music fans through a mobile platform."
Head, Delivery, Group Consumer Financial Services
“We are very pleased to be the first bank in South East Asia to be launching secured mobile Internet banking - ‘OCBC Mobile Banking’ in conjunction with StarHub on i-mode. With the launch of i-mode service in Singapore, it presents a unique opportunity for OCBC Bank to leverage and partner with StarHub to bring a whole new banking experience to our customers and to introduce innovative financial services in the mobile space. With the introduction of OCBC Mobile banking, it serves as an extension of our delivery channels. Our customers can now enjoy selected Internet banking services through their mobile phones. Our customers can view their account balances and recent transaction details on their mobile screen. Not only can they easily transfer funds and make bill payments with a few quick clicks on their phones, they can also be the first to know about the latest products and promotions, and enjoy exclusive privileges. It’s friendly and a breeze to use. This is part of OCBC Bank’s ongoing mission to help individuals achieve their financial aspirations by providing innovative financial services that meet their needs. We believe it is timely to provide the consumers a total mobility solution to access their finances on the go. The power of OCBC Mobile Banking lies in providing our customers secured banking in a connected universe. They can now truly bank anywhere and any time, it is like having a Bank in Your Pocket!”
Strategic Business Director
“Being the top online media company and value-added service provider for China and the Chinese communities worldwide, SINA Mobile is riding on its success in China’s mobile value-added services market to expand to the Southeast Asia market. We are happy to be one of the valued content partners of Singapore’s i-mode service offered exclusively by StarHub. StarHub’s i-mode users will be the first to enjoy SINA content in Singapore."
Executive Vice-President of Product Development & Branding and New Media
Singapore Press Holdings
“The younger generation is constantly on the move and they want relevant information at their fingertips. We believe that by offering our news and information on i-mode, SPH will not only stay relevant to our existing readers but also strengthen our reach amongst the young working adults, a segment that is very mobile savvy with a big interest in new technology. We are pleased to work with StarHub as a preferred content partner to launch i-mode in Singapore. Users will find it an easy and intuitive platform to access a wide variety of content, ranging from news, to lifestyle and entertainment."
Yahoo! South-East Asia
"Yahoo! Mobile helps you stay connected, while on-the-go. Yahoo! on StarHub's i-mode provides easy access to essential Yahoo! services such as Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! Messenger, Yahoo! Search, Yahoo! Photos and much more. Yahoo! is focused on extending its key services to mobile devices in order to provide easy access to essential services Yahoo! users know and love - whenever, wherever and however they want. Extending the Yahoo! experience to mobile phones through with the i-mode platform achieves this, especially since i-mode is recognised as one of the world's major mobile Internet platforms."
“ZUJI has always been at the forefront of technology; using both online and mobile services as a means of engaging and communicating with our customers who lead increasingly dynamic lives. The partnership with StarHub - one of Singapore’s best online mobile operators - and ZUJI, recently awarded ‘Best Online Travel Agent’ status at TTG Asia Media’s 16th Annual Travel awards Ceremony last night, will bring about the best mobile travel information service in the region. ZUJI is therefore very excited about the launch of i-mode; we see this new platform as a compelling channel for our customers now and in the future. The collaboration further reinforces ZUJI’s promise of being the online travel guru available anytime, anywhere, and for every travel preference and budget.”