Verizon Wireless to offer MSN services from Friday

Verizon Wireless and Microsoft will team up to offer MSN services to Verizon wireless customers who have Web-enabled digital phones, the companies said in a joint statement Thursday.

The service, known as VZW with MSN, will go live Friday and give users access to the Hotmail e-mail service, MSN Calendar and MSN Messaging, plus access to Microsoft .Net alerts as well as other MSN information, such as news, stocks, sports and weather. The two partners are expected to announce a price of US$6.95 per month for the service.

The two companies have signed a strategic alliance under which they will co-develop new mobile applications in the future, such as location-based services, according to the statement.

These services will be delivered in future to Verizon customers through a range of Windows Powered Pocket PCs and smart phones, the companies said. Microsoft's .NET Enterprise Server will be used as the platform on which to deliver future services, the companies said.

VZW with MSN will be the default service offered to new Verizon subscribers from Friday onwards, and the two companies will begin an aggressive marketing campaign to promote the service, according to the statement.

Verizon Wireless, based in Bedminster, New Jersey, runs the largest wireless voice and data network in the U.S., with around 30 million subscribers to its wireless services.

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