Verizon Alliances Expand Data Services

Verizon Wireless partners with Upoc, Gateway to expand data services for its next-generation networks.

LAS VEGAS —Verizon Wireless Inc. is forging business partnerships designed to expand the data services available for the companys next-generation networks.

At the CTIA IT Wireless show here, Bedminster, N.J.-based Verizon announced a deal with Upoc Inc., of New York, to offer customers the ability to exchange text messages with large groups of people.

Through, Verizons SMS companion Web site, the company is offering more than 10,000 chat group options for customers whose phones handle two-way messaging, officials said.

Customers also can sign up for a variety of information alerts via the Upoc Communities service although most of these are focused on the entertainment sector.

The service is available on a per-message or monthly packaged bundle basis.

Separately at the show, Gateway Inc., of Poway, Calif., launched a wireless data service that runs on Verizons new Express Network.

The Gateway Mobile Wireless Solution is a service that gives corporate customers access to their data via a wireless modem on a Gateway notebook. Gateway service reps will act as consultants, recommending various Verizon pricing plans according to customer need, said officials at the San Diego company.

The idea is that Gateway can be a one-stop shop for hardware, software and network service—and it gives Verizon another sales channel.

The service is available initially in Dallas, Houston and Las Vegas but should be available nationally, along with Verizons high-speed network, by mid-2003.

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