RealTime IT News

Amazon.co.uk Inks WAP Sales Deal with Genie

[London, ENGLAND] BT's mobile Internet portal Genie Wednesday signed a deal that will let users buy products via WAP phones direct from Amazon.co.uk.

To use the service, Genie customers will need to register with Amazon.co.uk via either the Web or the WAP portal. After that, buying books, CDs, DVDs, and other products handled by Amazon's U.K. online store is similar -- if not quite as informative -- as shopping on the Web.

With the much more limited user interface, customers will simply receive a choice of the five most closely matched items in response to a search for a particular product. However, the system is designed to provide essential and additional information such as availability and recommendations.

Jim Ryan, vice president of Global Portal, Genie, said the Amazon deal was proof that Genie was aiming to provide the best WAP content and services through an easy-to-access one stop shop.

Speaking for Amazon.co.uk, Managing Director Steve Frazier said mobile Internet applications gave Amazon customers the additional option of buying while on the move.

"Through Genie we can offer our WAP service via a popular portal that people are already familiar with and feel comfortable using," said Frazier.

Genie's service is not limited to the U.K. as other Genie Web and WAP portals have been established in the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Spain, and Hong Kong, together with a WAP portal in Malaysia. Genie claims 2.8 million registrations in total.

Currently a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT, Genie is part of the telco's comprehensive restructuring program and later this year will be 75 percent owned by BT wireless and 25 percent owned by BT group.