By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
In what it calls one of its biggest-ever marketing efforts, Verizon Wireless launched an expanded slate of BREW-based downloadable games and applications and began offering its first Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless (BREW) equipped CDMA 1X phone, Motorola's color-screen T720.
Verizon's two current BREW-equipped phones are 2G models. BREW competes with Java-based J2ME services offered by Sprint PCS.
At the end of September, the number of BREW apps grew to about 60 from about 25, and more than 150 more are in test stages, a Verizon spokesman said. BREW service was soft-launched nationwide in June.
With several weeks of the Sept. 23 Get It Now launch, Verizon plans to offer six more CDMA 1X phones capable of downloading Get It Now apps, he said.
Although these phones and the T720 are 1X models, the Get It Now downloads occur over Verizon's slower circuit-switched 2G channels. In the first half of 2003, however, Verizon plans to offer more robust applications, such as multiplayer games, requiring downloads over its higher speed 1X packet-data network.
New BREW-based Get It Now applications include downloading color pictures and downloading real-time airport status and flight information.
Subscribers can sample applications for free, then pay a monthly subscription fee of $1 to $2 per application or buy the application outright. Some apps require airtime use.
The T720 is priced at a suggested $299 when a customer signs up for a two-year contract. It features two-line external caller ID, vibrating alert, assisted GPS, WAP browser, PIM functions, voice dialing, voice recorder, polyphonic sound, gpsOne, and interchangeable front and rear covers.
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