RealTime IT News

Zoom Launches Fashion Shopping by WAP Phone

[London, ENGLAND] In what must be one of the most optimistic European Internet services to date, Zoom.co.uk is enabling shopaholics to buy clothes while on the move using a WAP phone.

Making the service possible is a deal with BT's Genie mobile Internet service, and software developed in conjunction with WAP software specialist Dimon.

To purchase clothes while, for example, traveling on a bus or having lunch, the user logs into the relevant WAP site using a Zoom username and enters the code for the product which can (says Zoom) be found online. To complete the purchase, the user chooses size and color, and clicks "buy this."

It may seem an odd way to purchase fashion items, especially in London where Saville Row tailoring involves multiple measuring and fitting sessions to ensure customer satisfaction. Yet Zoom has already become one of the U.K.'s most successful fashion sites, scoring 14 million page impressions per month on its regular, non-WAP Web site.

Zoom's WAP service is not just for fashion shopping but includes e-mail access which could well turn out to be the more popular and useful service for Zoom's users.

"We aim to utilize all accessible channels from interactive TV to PC and WAP to allow our users access to Zoom in whatever platform they prefer to use," said Eva Pascoe, managing director, Zoom.co.uk.

Zoom is, in fact, jointly owned by the Arcadia Group, the UK's second largest clothing retailer, and Associated Newspapers Ltd, and has a special interest in promoting fashion sales across all media. Its partners include leading High Street brands such as Pink Soda, Elle Creation, Jo Boxer, TopShop, TopMan, Racing Green, Dorothy Perkins, Hawkshead, and Principles.

Who knows? Perhaps shoppers will forget about "feeling the quality" and click "buy this" frequently on their WAP phones. At least they will earn "zoompoints" on every transaction.