3 Group and Yahoo! today announced a deal whereby Yahoo! will provide the 3 mobile network with mobile services worldwide.
3 network users will be able to avail of internet services such as Yahoo! Search, Yahoo! Mobile Web, Yahoo! Messenger, Yahoo! Mail and Yahoo! Go for Mobile. Additional services will be made available to 3 customers in the future.
The first services will go live in the UK this summer and will then be rolled out to the rest of the world.
This is the first strategic alliance with a global 3G mobile broadband network operator that Yahoo! has entered into.
The arrangement will use Yahoo!’s expertise in transcoding online content for mobile devices to allow 3 customers to surf the entire world wide web from their handsets. 3 will offer its customers full access to Yahoo!’s powerful indexed search engine 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 rollout of the product portfolio.
Christian Salbaing, managing director, Europe telecommunications at 3 Group, said: “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.”
Geraldine Wilson, vice-president, connected life, Yahoo! Europe, said: “This announcement is another major milestone in Yahoo!’s strategy to extend our user experience ‘beyond the browser’ and across other platforms. 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.”
By Niall Byrne