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Ringing Up Ring Tone Revenue

Techstination feature for Wednesday, April 7, 2004

What kinds of ring tones are on your cell phone? Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Wherever people are gathered…you here them. Ring tones can be clips of favorite songs….or favorite cartoons…(sound) And those ring tones are turning into big business…about 3.5 billion dollars a year globally. Sprint is partnering with HBO…to offer ring tones and such for cell phones based on The Sopranos. And Chief Operating Officer Len Lauer says…

"It's a very worthwhile proposition to take a look at bringing content to our customers, whether that's in ring tones so a customer can personalize the rings on their phones, whether it's in streaming video content. You'll be seeing more from Sprint PCS so you could download and look at your favorite clips from TV segments. You could take a look at top news stories, you could look at video clips of maybe the top four sports plays of maybe your favorite football or baseball team from their play the evening before.

And Lauer says it's clear that customers are willing to pay for those features. The company is also hoping to benefit from Cingular's planned takeover of AT&T Wireless…

"Cingular's planned acquisition of AT&T Wireless will move six national competitors down to five. We believe it's a great time for Sprint and Sprint PCS to take advantage of this and to take market share away from AT&T Wireless and from Cingular while they work to get regulatory approval in the next 12 months and they work to consolidate their operations."

Other carriers…such as Verizon Wireless…having been moving in on those customers as well. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.