Virgin Media Joins Bebo Open Mobile
AOL has announced that Virgin Media has become the latest mobile operator to join Bebo's Open Mobile program with the launch of Mobile Messaging and Mobile Internet.
Launched in February, Bebo Open Mobile is a global program for mobile operators, handset manufacturers and software developers to support the customisable delivery of the Bebo social networking experience to mobile users. The initiative offers a suite of tools and has achieved significant international adoption.
Sean Kane, VP Mobile, AOL People Networks, says: "Virgin Media's decision to embed Bebo in their customer experience plays to both of our strengths and joins two great brands. In partnership with Virgin Media, we will be able to deliver great mobile content to more users."
Virgin Media and Bebo are announcing the deployment of:
- Bebo Open Mobile Internet: Virgin Media and Bebo have launched a customised version of the Bebo mobile site with Virgin Media navigation, support for mobile advertising and customised Virgin Media features. Virgin Media has also pre-loaded bookmarks and other Bebo services on Virgin Media mobile phones so that Bebo mobile services are available immediately to phone buyers. As a result of these activities, the number of page views to the Bebo mobile site from Virgin Media's mobile customers has already grown by 14%* from February to March.
- Bebo Open Mobile Messaging: Virgin Media's mobile customers can immediately receive alerts and updates through the 22326 (BEBO) short code. Using the short code, Virgin Media customers can update their Bebo profile, participate in mobile content such as polls and interact with friends.
John Conlon, Marketing Controller of digital services at Virgin Media, said: "More and more of our customers are taking the Mobile Internet with them and staying up-to-date and in touch with mobile social networking. Bebo Open Mobile allows us to offer all the great Bebo features in a simple and accessible way that makes sense for Virgin Media customers and we look forward to continuing to work with Bebo to bring new services and experiences to all consumers."
Bebo and Virgin Media are also working to further embed the Bebo experience and content on mobile devices sold to Virgin Media customers.
Bebo is part of the AOL People Networks business unit, whose vision is to help improve people's lives by connecting them with everyone and everything they care about. Mobile devices are part of a three-pronged strategy in which AOL People Networks helps the user connect to their online life through mobile devices, along with a web-based experience and through desktop clients.
AOL People Networks expects to make further announcements regarding Bebo Open Mobile Partners and initiatives in the US and internationally throughout 2009.
Bebo is your life online. It is a social experience the helps you discover what's going on with your world and helps the world discover what's going on with you. Bebo has more than 27 million** unique visitors worldwide and on the days that they use Bebo, they spend an average of 20** minutes on the site. Bebo, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of AOL LLC, a majority-owned subsidiary of Timer Warner Inc.
Bebo is part of AOL People Networks, a collection of community platforms that help improve people's lives by connecting them with everyone and everything they care about. People Networks does this through a Web-based experience on Bebo.com , through desktop clients and mobile devices.
People Networks combines the AIM and ICQ personal communications networks, social media network Bebo and social search and answer service Yedda. People Networks' collection of community platforms reaches 88 million*** unduplicated users worldwide.
Source for metrics data in this release:
* Bebo internal metrics
** Based on Worldwide comScore Media Metrix, March 2009
***Custom AOL-defined People Networks report, based on comScore Media Metrix Audience Duplication report (March 2009)
About Virgin Media
With almost 10 million customers, Virgin Media is the UK's first quad-play provider of broadband, TV, phone and mobile.
The company is the largest residential broadband provider in the UK, using a unique fibre optic cable network to deliver next generation ultrafast internet access of up to 50Mb to just over half of all homes. Combined with a high speed ADSL service and mobile broadband products, Virgin Media is able to offer broadband internet access to virtually the entire country.
Virgin Media has the UK's most advanced TV on demand service and is the only TV platform to carry BBC iPlayer. It is the second largest provider of pay TV, was the first to launch a high definition TV service and offers a high-specification, HD-ready V+ personal video recorder.
The company operates the most popular virtual mobile network in the UK which, when launched, was the world's first such mobile phone service. It is also one of the largest fixed-line home phone providers in the country.
Virgin Media also owns Virgin Media Television (VMtv) which runs eight entertainment channels, including Virgin1, Living, Bravo and Challenge. VMtv is a 50 per cent joint partner with BBC Worldwide in UKTV, which consists of ten channels including Dave, G.O.L.D., Watch and Alibi.
With operations based entirely in the UK, Virgin Media Inc. is listed on the NASDAQ Stock Market (VMED).
For more information, go to www.virginmedia.com.
Tel: +61 (2) 9409 3100
AOL People Networks (International)
Tel: +44 (0)20 7291 4918
Virgin Media Corporate PR
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7299 5702