|KPN launches UMTS with the SE Z1010|
Posted: 12-Oct-2004 [Source: KPN]
[KPN announces availability of the Sony Ericsson Z1010 UMTS handset.]
With new features such as video telephony and the ability to view high quality video and images, UMTS primarily adds a new visual dimension to the mobile phone. Furthermore, UMTS also enables users to surf the mobile Internet at broadband speeds, enhancing the performance of i-mode(tm), with sites appearing on screen particularly quickly and paving the way for new rich multimedia content.
The most eye-catching new service is video telephony, where callers don't just hear one another, they see one another on camera. Users can also show each other the world around them. Estate agents can show clients 'around' a property, or developers give a visual update on building work in progress. Setting up a video call is as easy as a voice call; as long as both parties have a suitable handset and are in the UMTS coverage area, its simply a question of dialling the number and clicking the 'video call' button.
Since not everyone will have a video mobile from day one, KPN has made it possible to hold a video call with anyone with a PC and webcam -- anywhere in the world. KPN has developed a special application that can be downloaded free from www.kpn.com. The PC user is assigned a unique phone number that can be 'video dialled' from the UMTS handset. Video calls will cost the same as regular voice calls until the end of the year.
Enhanced i-mode services
Improved transmission speeds make i-mode more user-friendly and compelling. Customers can rapidly download the latest hi-res film and music clips, and streaming video services make it possible to watch TV shows on demand. A number of content partners have already enriched their news, weather, sport and music content with video and audio offerings. Customers can also quickly exchange high quality photos and videos with the Z1010. Another new feature is the ability is to browse i-mode and talk on the phone simultaneously. Besides surfing i-mode sites, the Z1010 can also easily be used as broadband modem for the laptop via infrared, Bluetooth or the USB cable provided, giving users fast mobile access to the Internet or corporate networks.
Mobile broadband services can be used anywhere in KPN's UMTS coverage area. The network already provides coverage in more than 50 population centres in the Netherlands and is continually being expanded. Since the start of KPN's service provision in July, coverage has been extended to include cities such as Groningen, Enschede, Nijmegen, Tilburg and Deventer. At year-end, KPN expects to provide coverage to approximately 40% of the population. Outside the UMTS coverage area, services automatically switch over to the nationwide GPRS network. Video telephony is then no longer possible.
KPN's UMTS customers can hold video calls with users on Vodafone's network in the Netherlands, providing both parties have a suitable phone and UMTS coverage from their respective network. KPN customers will also be able to use UMTS over the border, starting later this month on KPN-subsidiary E-Plus' network in Germany. Roaming will become available in an increasing number of European countries over the coming months.
Pricing and distribution
The i-mode browser compatible Sony Ericsson Z1010 is available from EUR 219, depending on the subscription package chosen. UMTS is at this moment only available to KPN subscription customers. The range of i-mode handsets will continue to be broadened during the coming months, with further models supporting video calls and other broadband services.
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