StarHub first in world to launch Neopets downloads

Singapore, 20 March 2003 - From tomorrow, StarHub Mobile users can strut about town with virtual pets with names like Kougra, Scorchio, Kacheek and Chia on their phones, thanks to a tie-up between US-based NeoPets® Inc. and StarHub.  In fact, StarHub is the first in the world to offer NeoPets content downloads such as MMS pictures on mobile phones.

StarHub Mobile customers can own Neopets characters on their handsets, and send them via SMS and MMS to their friends.  Customers need only pay $2.50 for each MMS download, and $1 for each of the other downloads such as logos, icons, picture messages and ringtones.  StarHub Mobile customers who are interested in the Neopets downloads can visit www.starhub.com/gee.

Mr Chan Kin Hung, Senior Vice President, StarHub Mobile said, "I'm very excited that these very popular virtual characters like Kougra and Kacheek are now available to our customers.  This is part of StarHub's continuing efforts to enhance and add fun to our customers' mobile lifestyle.  Neopets enjoy tremendous popularity among children and young adults who spend hours to take care of their virtual pets daily.  The pets sometimes become so much a part of their lives that members live and dream about them.  Even my eight-year-old son is a big fan of Neopets, and he has been asking me when he can send Neopets MMS to his friends! I told him that it's tomorrow and it's only on StarHub."

Neopets.com is the largest youth entertainment site on the worldwide web, and Neopets online community is the largest of any kind in the world.  In Singapore alone, registrations total more than 1.2 million, making Neopets' per capita penetration in the country the highest in the world.  To date, site members have created more than 74 million Neopets through approximately 50 million accounts.  The popularity of Neopets continues to grow at a rate of more than 60,000 new registrations each day.  Members sign up for an account and create their own virtual Neopet.  Henceforth, they can feed and clothe the pet, as well as play with and train it.  Members not only can participate in a wide range of activities, stories, adventures and games, but also interact and organise activities among themselves.

StarHub has been making inroads into the youth market, with many services targeted at the young and young-at-heart, and its launch of Neopets downloads will further strengthen its position in the youth market. 

To reach out to youths, StarHub offers an innovative range of services that are specially tailored to meet their needs. These services include SMS/MMS ringtones and logo downloads, over 100 colourful JAVA games and compelling MMS applications like MMS Music and MMS Personal Webcam.  StarHub's PowerChat plans, with free day or night local incoming calls and 600 free local SMS, are ideal for youths who are heavy users.  StarHub's Green Prepaid mobile service also appeals to youths with per-second billing, free bundled SMS and low charges for additional usages.

Recently, StarHub launched two more services for the youth market - Hub TV and the MTV Code mobile plan.  StarHub's Hub TV is Singapore's first and only SMS/MMS channel.  Hub TV users can actively influence contents on the channel by sharing their thoughts via SMS or expressing themselves visually by sending pictures via MMS, while enjoying their favourite TV programmes.  The MTV Code, another youth-oriented service, is a new mobile plan that enables customers to stay in touch with something close to their hearts - music.  

Mr. Billy Shum, President of NeoPets Asia Pte Ltd said, "NeoPets is moving into the mobile world.  Extending our widely popular Internet site to the wireless arena is a natural extension.  We are pleased to work with StarHub to bring NeoPets mobile content to our Singaporean members." In addition to the mobile effort in Singapore, NeoPets recently announced that it will soon roll out versions of its website in Japan and China.

To encourage customers to download Neopets content onto their phones, StarHub Mobile will conduct a monthly drawing from May to July 2003, whereby customers can win attractive prizes including handphones, unreleased Neopets collectibles and shopping vouchers.   Customers will get one chance at the draw for every download.  

 

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