Cell Broadcast Employed in Russia for News Alerts

Powered by Celltick’s LiveScreen technology, the Russian GSM operator, VimpelCom has launched its “Chameleon” service, which broadcasts live content directly to the phone screens of millions of subscribers.

VimpelCom users now enjoy streams of free news headlines, sport reports, weather updates, music stories, gossip and games directly on their idle screens. Just like a screen saver, the messages appear silently only when the phone is not in use, and let users access a variety of data service with a one-click reaction. In its first stage “Chameleon” will be available to 2 million users, and the operator plans to expand it to more than 10 million users by the end of the year.

The service will be deployed across all the network’s 88 regions – from Kaliningrad in the west to Khabarovsk in the Far East. VimpelCom has created a country-wide team to run the broadcast operation, effectively working like a TV editorial team. They will broadcast programs based on VimpelCom’s current content sources as well as new providers such as MTV Gossip, Sony Music Trivia, Cosmopolitan and Playboy. The service targets all types of audiences, and is able to broadcast both to the entire subscriber base and to specific segments and specific locations.

The operator expects “Chameleon” to boost its data revenue while increasing subscribers’ loyalty and enhancing its brand perception. A trial of the service in the summer of 2004 achieved dramatic results. 2,000 users received broadcasts for a few weeks; 40% of them clicked on to access value added services, each adding an average of 15% to their monthly spending.

“The Russian mobile market enters today a new level of development”, said Victor Markelov, Products Director at VimpelCom. “Our customers are changing as well as their wishes and priorities – as low prices now matter less than top quality services. Beeline wants to remain the number one mobile operator in Russia and offer our customers a world-class service. We are confident that our new Chameleon service, which is available for Beeline subscribers only, will stimulate our customers’ interest and increase their demand for entertaining and valuable services”.

“We are delighted to partner with VimpelCom in turning its live screens vision into reality”, says Yossi Wellingstein, Celltick’s CEO. “Our system places VimpelCom in the forefront of mobile innovation, and gives it a substantial edge in the mobile service market. Celltick has dedicated many talents and resources to making this service a success, and we have no doubt that VimpelCom’s subscribers will be extremely happy with the results”.”


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