RealTime IT News

Packard Bell Taps EarthLink as ISP

Just in time for the holiday shopping season, Packard Bell NEC Inc. has chosen EarthLink Network Inc. as its preferred Internet service provider.

EarthLink will be prominently featured on every Packard Bell and NEC computer distributed in the U.S. Packard Bell will offer a $100 rebate to new PC owners who sign up for EarthLink service between Oct. 15 and Jan. 15, 1999. All Packard Bell and NEC Ready desktop models are eligible for the rebate. EarthLink will also waive the $25 setup fee for all Packard Bell customers and provide a 15 day trial period.

EarthLink will also customize a co-branded personal start page for each Packard Bell customer signing up for the EarthLink Sprint Internet access service.

The marketing deal will be promoted in print advertising and point-of-purchase displays at retailers including CompUSA, Circuit City, Staples and Sears. Financial terms of the arrangement were not disclosed.

Today's announcement is the latest in a series of marketing alliances computer makers and ISPs have made recently, including several other deals P-B and NEC have made with other ISPs.

"Securing these types of default positions with leading brand-name computer manufacturers such as Packard Bell NEC allows us to gain share among the high percentage of consumers who are buying new computers specifically to get on the Internet," said Garry Betty, president and CEO of EarthLink.

"EarthLink is the preferred ISP on all Packard Bell and NEC Ready desktop computers distributed during the holiday season rush, and for us, the opportunity is significant," Betty said.