RealTime IT News

Verizon SuperPages to Launch Wireless Version, Incorporate BigYellow.com

Telecom giant Verizon said its Dallas-based SuperPages.com online yellow page directory will be moving into the wireless space.

SuperPages.com --which features more than 13 million local business listings, as well as maps and driving directions -- will be made available to users of the Palm VII handheld device, through the system's proprietary Palm.Net service.

Verizon executives called the initiative the "first step in Verizon's aggressive strategy to provide our customers with wireless applications," said Patrick Marshall, group vice president for marketing for Verizon Information Services.

"It is our goal to provide consumers with the information they want and need, quickly and conveniently, through a variety of different technologies including the Internet, e-mail and wireless communication," Marshall added. "Also, by providing SuperPages.com on the Palm VII handheld, we are demonstrating our ongoing commitment to increasing our value to advertisers and increasing their exposure to potential customers."

SuperPages.com competes with other directory firms like BigFoot and InfoUSA.com, the latter of which recently announced a deal with Kivera, a firm that develops and markets interactive mapping and location services.

In a separate announcement, Verizon said it would be merging SuperPages with BigYellow.com, the online yellow page directory of Bell Atlantic, which merged with GTE to create Verizon.

The two sites' advertisers and content -- which includes city information -- will be folded into SuperPages.

"By combining the site, Verizon Information Services will be able to put the best aspects of each site into a single online location and focus its efforts on rapidly and continually enhancing the consumer experience on SuperPages.com," said SuperPages group manager for consumer products Erik Johnson.

Company executives said they expect a redesigned SuperPages, incorporating BigYellow.com, to launch on October 20.

In addition, the new site will offer MerchantMatch, a resource that allows the site's users to anonymously request bids for particular products or services; an internal system will coordinate these potential buyers with SuperPages advertisers willing to make a bid.