Bell Atlantic Mobile and Amazon.com today announced an agreement that will enable customers of the wireless provider's popular Web Access wireless Internet access service to make purchases for the first time directly from their digital phone.
As a result of the agreement between the leading online retailer and the leading wireless provider, starting March 1, Web Access customers can access the Amazon.com Anywhere service via their Web-enabled digital wireless handset to buy any of the millions of items at Amazon.com, check out reviews by other consumers, or even select a gift and the gift-wrap—all from the convenience of the palm of their hand.
Beginning in mid-March, Web Access customers who complete a transaction through Amazon.com on their digital phone will receive a $15 electronic coupon from Amazon.com toward future e-commerce purchases made through the online retailer's Web site.
"This alliance with Amazon.com completely redefines the meaning of point-of-sale for our customers, and will be the first in a series of wireless e-commerce initiatives by Bell Atlantic Mobile," said Debra Carroll, vice president of marketing for Bell Atlantic Mobile. "For the first time, our Web Access consumers will have the freedom to buy many items, such as books, CDs and toys right from their digital phone, without the need for a landline Internet connection. This significantly enhances our Web Access service, allowing our customers to join Amazon's 17 million existing customers to push the e-commerce trend to the next level through wireless."
"Our Amazon.com Anywhere initiative continues to expand how our customers find, discover, and buy anything online—at any time, from anywhere," said Lil Mohan, general manager, Amazon.com Anywhere. "We are pleased to work with Bell Atlantic Mobile to provide customers a convenient mobile shopping experience."
Bell Atlantic Mobile's Web Access customers already use Web-enabled digital phones to surf the Web, send and receive e-mail, get real-time stock market analysis and quotes, and set up customized personal Web pages. They also benefit from a wireless personal organizer and access to nearly twenty leading content providers.
"Wireless Internet access is poised to become one of the hottest trends over the next few years," explains Carroll. "This is what's driving us to seek the most strategic e-commerce relationships, like Amazon.com, for Web Access offerings. As our customers become increasingly mobile, we are allowing them to take their PC's functionality with them, anywhere."
By 2003, industry analysts predict there will be 600 million Web-browsing wireless phones in operation around the world, with their users spending $33.5 billion annually for the service.
Web Access customers pay just $9.95 a month for the service on top of their DigitalChoice® voice price plans, which begin as low as $19.99 a month. Customers share the monthly bundle of access minutes between their voice and data service.
Amazon.com (Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries) is the Internet's No. 1 music, No. 1 DVD and video, and No. 1 book retailer. Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN) opened its virtual doors on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection, along with online auctions and free electronic greeting cards. Amazon.com lists more than 18 million unique items in categories including books, CDs, toys, electronics, videos, DVDs, home improvement products, software, and video games. Through Amazon.com zShops, any business or individual can sell virtually anything to Amazon.com's more than 17 million customers, and with Amazon.com Payments, any seller can accept credit card transactions, avoiding the hassles of offline payments.
This announcement contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, Amazon.com's limited operating history, anticipated losses, unpredictability of future revenues, potential fluctuations in quarterly operating results, seasonality, consumer trends, competition, risk of distribution center expansion, risks related to fourth quarter performance, risks of system interruption, management of potential growth, risks related to auction and zShops services, risks related to fraud and Amazon.com Payments, and risks of new business areas, international expansion, business combinations, and strategic alliances. More information about factors that potentially could affect Amazon.com's financial results is included in Amazon.com's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1998 and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 1999, June 30, 1999, and September 30, 1999.
Bell Atlantic Mobile owns and operates the largest wireless network in the East covering 154,000 square miles, and the largest chain of retail outlets devoted exclusively to wireless voice, data, and paging. Based in Bedminster, NJ, Bell Atlantic Mobile has 7.7 million customers and 8,800 employees from Maine to Georgia and, through a separate subsidiary, in the Southwest. Through its "Wireless at Work..." community service program, the company uses its technology to help individuals and communities improve security and emergency communications. Bell Atlantic Mobile's parent, Bell Atlantic Corporation (NYSE:BEL) is one of the world's largest wireless communications companies, with domestic operations in 25 states and international investments in Mexico, Europe and the Pacific Rim. For more information on Bell Atlantic Mobile visit: www.bam.com; on global operations visit: www.bellatlantic.com/worldwide.