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RealTime IT News

SmarTone Launches Mobile ISP, Gets Content From Yahoo!

SmarTone Mobile Communications Ltd., with over 500,000 mobile phone subscribers, plans to introduce its Internet service, iSmart, this month and has signed a deal with Yahoo! Inc. to provide content for the service provider's Web site.

"We are committed to continuously providing innovative and value added services for our customers,"said Huber Ng, SmarTone's chief executive officer. "iSmart is our latest product to serve the growing demand for Internet services from our customers."

Ng indicated that SmarTone was enlisting Yahoo! to provide content for iSmart so that customers are provided with the most up-to-date and significant content.

Yahoo! will provide search capabilities, directories for general and local news, sports and entertainment information.

The two companies also partnered to implement a promotional campaign that would have shared benefits.

SmarTone plans to run over the Internet service as normal dial-up and over its mobile network to handset customers.

Earlier this week, rumors about the deal sent SmarTone's stock value on the Hong Kong exchange soaring, indicating for the first time that the Internet could be a factor in the Hong Kong market.

Last week British Telecom became a strategic shareholder in SmarTone.

Yahoo! founder Jerry Yang was in Hong Kong for the announcement of the deal. Yang said that Hong Kong had good potential because it had come out of the economic "doldrums."