Barnes & Noble.com Makes Mobile Commerce Play

Barnes & Noble.com Tuesday leapt into the
mobile commerce fray with the expansion of its B&N.com On the Go program, giving customers the ability to shop with mobile phones and handheld computers.


With the launch, the No. 2 online bookseller has entered into strategic
agreements with a number of wireless leaders, including Sprint PCS (FON),
Verizon Wireless and OmniSky.


Financial details were not disclosed.


Free to customers, B&N.com (BNBN)
On the Go lets users shop and search for books, music and software, locate
and contact the closest Barnes & Noble stores and send e-cards.


With the expanded program, customers may access Barnes & Noble.com through a
variety of mobile phone carriers and devices in addition to the Palm VII
handheld, such as Sprint PCS and OmniSky’s wireless service for the Palm V
handheld. Later, clients will gain access to Barnes & Noble.com through a
menu selection on Verizon Wireless’ mobile Internet service. Clients may
gain access here.


Currently, Palm VII handheld users can download the application here.


The Web clipping application, used on a Palm VII handheld with the Palm.Net service, has also been enhanced, and
features a graphical interface and account creation.


Carl Rosendorf, senior vice president of Barnes & Noble.com, said the deal was a natural given forecasts for exponential growth in the wireless arena.


“We see enormous potential for the wireless market, as industry analysts
project that the number of Net-enabled wireless devices will surpass the
number of PCs connected to the Internet by the year 2003.”


As part of the initiative, Barnes & Noble.com also has relationships with Ericsson (ERICY) for mobile applications development, WorkSpot Inc., for Palm (PALM)
VII handheld development, and Phone.com, for mobile phone application
development.

Barnes & Noble.com is the second industry leader in as many days to unveil a
mobile agreement. In the ISP sector, [email protected] (ATHM)
Monday launched its Excite Mobile initiative, an extension of its broadband
online service strategy, in which the company hopes to fit wireless Web
users with their customized portfolio of news, directions, weather, personal
information and other specified interests for their convenience.

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