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Yahoo! and Sprint Team to Offer Multiplayer PC-to-Mobile Games
Posted: 16-May-2005 [Source: Sprint]

[Yahoo!'s multi-player PC-to-mobile games available to Sprint customers beginning with Yahoo! Poker.]

Sunnyvale, CA and Overland Park, Kan -- Yahoo! Inc. and Sprint today announced an agreement to offer Yahoo! Games' multiplayer PC-to-mobile games to customers in the Game Lobby from Sprint. Sprint is the first carrier to offer Yahoo!'s new games to consumers, the first of which is Yahoo! Poker, a game that enables people on their Sprint PCS VisionSM Phones to play against thousands of people playing Yahoo! Poker on their PCs at any time, as well as mobile-to-mobile and PC-to-PC game play. Yahoo! Poker will be available on select Sprint handsets in mid-June.

"For more than two years, Sprint customers have enjoyed multiplayer games," said Jason Ford, general manager - Games, Sprint. "The addition of Yahoo!'s PC-to-mobile games brings the game community experience to the next level by enabling our customers to play, chat and interact with gamers on PCs too. This is yet another example of how Sprint is leading the way in offering the most advanced mobile game applications to improve the user experience."

Yahoo! Poker Antes Up New Services and Features Yahoo! Poker, one of the first multiplayer PC-to-mobile games in the United States, exemplifies Yahoo!'s new style of games. Yahoo! Poker has an updated look and feel and integrates Yahoo! personalization and community features, such as Yahoo! Messenger and Yahoo! Avatars, to make game play more vivid and engaging.

Yahoo! Poker is a Texas Hold 'Em game that enables up to 10 people to play at once, connected with their mobile phones or through Yahoo! Games on their PC. The game offers multiple game-play options, including a tournament-style no-limit multiplayer game like the pros play, as well as a single-player career mode that takes a player through five different casinos. The game is fully integrated across devices so that players can bring their chip stack with them from the PC to their phone and back.

Taking advantage of Yahoo!'s community strengths, the game leverages Yahoo! Messenger for Mobile so players with the client downloaded on their phone can find their friends online and join them at a table to enjoy a round of Texas Hold 'Em. Additionally, Yahoo! Avatars are incorporated so players can bring their online persona into the Poker game to have a little fun taunting opponents.

The game is fully integrated across devices so that players can bring their chip stack with them from the PC to their phone and back.

"We are delighted to expand our relationship with Sprint and offer our exciting lineup of multiplayer PC-to-mobile games to the growing community of on-the-go gamers," said Geoff Graber, general manager of Yahoo! Games. "We are confident Yahoo! and Sprint users will be thrilled to be the first to try out Yahoo! Poker and see how fun and easy it is to enjoy other PC-to-mobile multiplayer games with their friends from their mobile device."

The Game Lobby from Sprint Is Popular with More than 500,000 Members

The Game Lobby from Sprint, powered by M7 Networks, is a virtual mobile community for gamers to meet, recommend games and challenge each other. It is accessed from both the fixed Internet and the mobile Web by more than 500,000 members and includes many features:

* Single gamer username across games and publishers

* Centralized listing of high-score postings

* Ability for users to manage their identity and determine what information is stored in their profile, such as pictures

* Opportunity to rate and review games

* Ability for users to create a buddy list of other members for challenging and instant messaging

* Option to opt in to receive new game alerts

* Interoperability with other game communities for cross-carrier buddy communication, game ratings and leaderboards

* The new status points program where users earn points for their activities to enhance the fun, competitive nature of the virtual games community

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