Television

Discovery US launches a consumer mobile site

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MUMBAI: US media firm Discovery Communications has launched its US direct-to-consumer mobile website.

This allows consumers to download wallpapers, ring tones, podcasts and other special features directly to their cell phones through the mobile URL at www.discoverymobile.com.

Discovery?s fans can now personalise their cell phones with a wide assortment of ring tones including nearly 30 different animal sounds and Animal Planet?s Crocodile Hunter, Steve Irwin saying "G?Day Mate." Additionally, consumers can choose from wallpapers ranging from over a dozen kinds of sharks to tattoos from TLC?s hit series Miami Ink.

Highlighting both current hit shows as well as programming genres that viewers have come to know and love from Discovery such as nature, science, exploration and animals, the mobile website also offers previews, scheduling information and short-form video clips.

Discovery executive VP strategy and development Don Baer says, "Our new mobile portal is the latest example of our strategy to expand the Discovery universe and provide consumers with informative and entertaining content and useful features when and where it fits their lifestyles".

Designed to complement its television networks by strengthening viewers? loyalty as well as attracting new audiences to Discovery?s brands, the mobile portal offers programming extensions that consumers can use while on-the-go. The features range from recipes and corresponding grocery lists from TLC?s new series Take Home Chef to fashion tips from the hosts of What Not To Wear. Pregnancy calendars, health tips and smoking cessation guides related to Discovery Health will also be added in the near future.

Discovery senior VP, new media Clint Stinchcomb, says, "Whether it?s a busy parent trying to feed the kids or a teenager looking to put a personal touch on their cell phone, our mobile portal is a way for consumers to simplify, enhance and enjoy their lives with Discovery features at their fingertips."

Features on Discovery?s new mobile portal also include:

? Downloadable ring tones, wallpaper and podcasts from Discovery favorites such as Discovery Channel?s Shark Week, TLC?s Miami Ink and Animal Planet?s The Crocodile Hunter, as well as over two dozen animal sounds and a variety of breathtaking nature scenes from around the globe, among others. The cost per download is $1.99.

? Discovery News text reports offering information in the areas of science, nature, health, travel, all things about planet earth and current affairs. Updated daily, Discovery News offers perspective and commentary from multiple sources including the company?s in-house development and editorial team and Associated Press Television News.

? Fan sites where consumers can view exclusive video clips, learn more about on-air personalities and access program schedules.

? Short-form spotlights of shows from Discovery?s entire family of U.S. networks offering program descriptions and scheduling information.

Discovery?s mobile portal can be accessed from any US network through the mobile URL at discoverymobile.com. The company will also introduce Discovery Mobile, a dedicated, 24-hour mobile programming network designed specifically for portable platforms available through mobile carriers this quarter. Updated weekly, Discovery Mobile will push content to consumers such as original made-for-mobile series, abbreviated versions of Discovery?s most popular programs, never before seen footage, one-of-a-kind extras and user-generated content.

The launch of the US mobile portal builds on Discovery?s strong foundation of success in the international mobile marketplace where it has already launched a direct-to-consumer mobile portal in the UK. Discovery Mobile is available in nine countries. The company also has a global partnership with Nokia, which carries customized Discovery content on its newest and most sophisticated devices.

This announcement follows a series of new media initiatives Discovery has recently unveiled. Discovery has been launching new services and working with strategic partners to bring its high-quality, informative and entertaining content to consumers wherever they are and whenever they want it.

Discovery says that it is the first media company to provide its world-class video content on Google Earth, the revolutionary satellite imagery-based mapping product, and the first nonfiction programmer to offer video content through the iTunes music store. Discovery also launched the first of its U.S. broadband channels: Discovery Channel Beyond, TLC Beyond, Travel Channel Beyond and Animal Planet Beyond, as well as the new TURBO broadband channel.

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