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THE WEATHER CHANNEL INTERACTIVE and VANTRIX to launch firstT ad-supported video weather forecasts on mobile web


* Atlanta . - The Weather Channel Interactive and Vantrix, a leading provider of mobile video solutions, today announced plans to launch a new mobile video service available through The Weather Channel mobile Web site. Wireless users who visit on virtually any video-enabled handset can watch weather reports for 100 different US cities, along with regional and national video forecasts, travel weather reports and weather-related news stories. During the CTIA Wireless conference, the companies will offer a pilot featuring forecasts for San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Atlanta.

With the use of industry-leading technology developed by Vantrix, the service can ensure that anyone with a multimedia-capable phone can access the content and have a video experience that is optimized for their specific phone without the need to download any additional software. Forecasts for the 100 metropolitan areas covered will be refreshed every thirty minutes, to ensure that they capture the latest information available, resulting in nearly 5,000 new videos every day.

The Weather Channel Mobile is consistently one of the top 5 mobile Web sites in the US, attracting approximately 6 million unique visitors each month, according to Telephia. The company has its own mobile advertising staff, which will manage the future sales of the available advertising inventory on the new video service.

“For people on the go, whether they are business travelers, skiers or little league parents, up-to-date weather information is incredibly important,” said Louis Gump, vice president of mobile for The Weather Channel Interactive. “We believe that this service will showcase the value of an integrated mobile Web and video experience, and are proud to be the first weather provider in the industry to make it available”, Gump continued.

Manish Jha, CEO of Vantrix, commented, “There are over 80 million people in the US with mobile phones that can play video, yet only a small fraction of them currently consume video on their phones. Innovative, relevant, easy-to-use and broadband-quality services like The Weather Channel Interactive’s mobile video portal will serve as a catalyst for mobile multimedia, and will go a long way towards educating consumers about the potential of today’s mobile phones,” he added. “By leveraging existing online consumer behavior when it comes to video and replicating it on mobile phones, we will greatly stimulate the adoption of mobile media in general, which will help carriers sign up more users on their unlimited data plans. We are delighted to be working with The Weather Channel Interactive to launch this first-of-a-kind wireless service offering.”


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