Expanding their global cooperation, HP and Nokia today announced an agreement to market the first mobile service that enables mobile phone users to receive FM radio broadcasts synchronized with interactive visuals and text on their handsets. Nokia announced the "Visual Radio" concept in October 2003 and has now teamed with HP to bring the innovative service to market globally.
Visual Radio enables users to view real-time information on artists, upcoming concert dates and other music-related topics on the phone display while simultaneously enjoying live FM broadcasts of their favorite radio programs. The service allows easy interactivity with the broadcast, such as participation in listener competitions and promotions, and it enables users to easily purchase ring tones and other digital content associated with their favorite music and artists. Visual Radio also delivers these benefits to traffic and weather reports, talk radio and sports broadcasts.
Nokia chose to work with HP to deliver the Visual Radio service to broadcasters and mobile operators because HP is the only company that delivers products across the entire mobility and digital entertainment spectrum - from devices, servers and software to infrastructure and services - and it understands how to use technology to deliver rich, seamless consumer experiences.
Nokia is the first mobile handset maker to offer mobile phones that support the Visual Radio technology. The company also plans to make the Visual Radio technology available to other handset manufacturers.
Under the terms of the agreement, Nokia will provide and continue to develop the Visual Radio technology that it has created. HP will sell the solution to mobile operators and FM radio stations worldwide, as well as provide installation, consulting and integration support. In addition, HP will host and manage the Visual Radio service using standards-based HP platforms.
"Both Nokia and HP have been showcasing their innovation capabilities as they move to expand their markets and business opportunities," said Rob Enderle, principal analyst, Enderle Group. "This alliance between the two firms seems to be the natural outgrowth of that focus on innovation and leverages both Nokia's leadership with handsets and HP's leadership in making complex projects and ideas seem easy."
New revenue streams for FM radio broadcasters and mobile operators
Visual Radio provides broadcasters with an opportunity to attract listeners and build brand loyalty by offering an interactive communications experience. Broadcasters learn more about their audiences when people participate in the real-time surveys, quizzes and special offers that appear on Visual Radio-enabled handset displays. Broadcasters also can increase revenue from enhanced advertising and from the sales of digital content.
Visual Radio can benefit mobile operators through faster adoption and increased use of mobile data services, the opportunity for greater market segmentation and service bundling, increased customer satisfaction and improved customer loyalty.
"Every physical analog process is becoming digital, mobile and virtual, and by adding a digital content channel to traditional FM radio, Nokia and HP are bringing a more dynamic and interactive medium to broadcasters and mobile operators," said Vikki Pachera, vice president of global alliances and business development, HP. "Visual Radio is a great example of a business model that enables our customers to capitalize on consumers' rising demand for content-rich, highly relevant services."
"We are delighted to collaborate with HP on bringing the Visual Radio service to mobile phone users all over the world," said Tarja Paakkenen, senior vice president, Nokia Multimedia. "The Visual Radio solution, created by Nokia and powered by HP, will redefine the radio experience for millions of radio viewers in the coming years. The expertise and commitment HP brings to the collaboration with Nokia will ensure the success of this strategic entry into the mobile mass media business."
Visual Radio is expected to be initially available in select countries this summer. Nokia plans to introduce new Visual Radio-enabled handsets to support the rollout of the service.
More information on Visual Radio is available by contacting HP at firstname.lastname@example.org