Linktone Ltd., a provider of wireless media, entertainment and communications services in China, today announced that it has signed partnership agreements with two Chinese handset manufacturers, Bird Communication Technology Co. Ltd. and Eastern Communications (EastCom).
Under the terms of the contracts, Linktone's wireless value-added services will be embedded in the handset vendors' products for end users' easy access.
Beginning March 2004, handsets manufactured by Bird will have wireless access protocol (WAP) links specially created for three of Linktone's products, namely Mobile Pet (a proprietary virtual pet game), "Tom and Jerry" (Cartoon Network's famous characters) comic strip and icon downloads, and Shin Chan (a popular Japanese cartoon character) comic strip and icon downloads. As the largest domestic handset manufacturer in China, Bird sold approximately 12 million mobile handsets in China in 2003, representing approximately 16% of the total market.
Similarly, EastCom will embed Linktone's entire short messaging service (SMS) based products, including personalized media, games and information services on its "Series 8" handsets, beginning this month. EastCom has approximately 5% of the market in China.