Jump to content

Vodafone live!

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Original logo

Vodafone live! was the brand name for the multimedia portal service of mobile phone operator Vodafone, offering news content, picture messaging, instant messaging, email, and downloadable ringtones and games.[1] The service officially launched on 24 October 2002, originally in eight countries.[2] The first compatible phones were the Japanese Sharp GX10 and Panasonic GD87, and the Nokia 7650.[3]

It was initially developed by Japan's J-Phone under the J-Sky brand. Vodafone acquired J-Phone in August 2001[4] and the J-Sky service in Japan was rebranded in line as Vodafone live! in 2003.[5] In addition, London-based Vizzavi which provided media content was taken full control by Vodafone (previously 50% owned)[6] in 2002 and the brand name was dropped, being integrated into Vodafone live![7] The service and its content are modelled largely on NTT DoCoMo's successful i-mode service.[8]

The service was marketed extensively,[9] using stars such as footballer David Beckham in the UK, Spain and Japan.[10] As of May 2003 there were 1.5 million customers.[11] In the UK market its main competing WAP portals were O2 Active and Orange World.[12]

While the service itself could be looked at with any WAP browser, Vodafone live! handsets marketed by the company integrated the service with each handset's core functions. All handsets included a colour screen, a digital camera and the capability to send and receive email, SMS and MMS messages. Vodafone live! had an icon-driven interface that was the same on all compatible models regardless of operating system.[13]

In December 2004, Vodafone live! with 3G services was launched.[14]

Vodafone live! was struggling against competitors i-mode and EZweb in Japan. In 2006 Vodafone announced that its Japanese division will be sold to SoftBank Group. Vodafone live! was replaced there by Yahoo! Keitai.[15]

In September 2009, Vodafone 360 and Vodafone My Web were announced to replace Vodafone live![16][17]


  1. ^ Daniel Ralph; Paul Graham (10 October 2003). MMS: Technologies, Usage and Business Models. Wiley. pp. 10–12. ISBN 9780470861165.
  2. ^ Tony Hallett (24 October 2002). "Vodafone gambles on 'biggest ever launch'". ZDNet.
  3. ^ Victor Keegan (31 October 2002). "Mobilising the forces". The Guardian.
  4. ^ Dan Sabbagh (25 August 2001). "Vodafone wins control of J-Phone". The Telegraph.
  5. ^ Reuters Staff (15 July 2003). "J-Phone to rename J-SKY Web service Vodafone Live!". Total Telecom. {{cite web}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  6. ^ "Vodafone snaps up Vizzavi web venture". BBC. 30 August 2002.
  7. ^ Owen Gibson (30 August 2002). "Vodafone pulls plug on Vizzavi brand". The Guardian.
  8. ^ Richard Wray (11 October 2004). "MmO2 mulls over i-mode technology". The Guardian.
  9. ^ Ravi Chandiramani (31 October 2002). "Vodafone backs 'Live' with £25m campaign". Campaign.
  10. ^ "Vodafone signs David Beckham for another year".
  11. ^ Dominic White (28 May 2003). "Vodafone paid '£1bn too much' for 3G". The Telegraph.
  12. ^ Tony Dennis (7 June 2006). "UK grows i-mode fastest outside Japan". The Inquirer. Archived from the original on October 15, 2012.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  13. ^ "One million Vodafone Live! customers". Vodafone Press Release. 26 April 2003.
  14. ^ "Global launch of Vodafone live! with 3G". Vodafone. 10 December 2004.
  15. ^ G Fasol (9 October 2006). "Yahoo!-keitai replaces Vodafone-Live!". Eurotechnology.
  16. ^ "Vodafone 360 takes on the Mobile App stores". TechCrunch. 24 September 2009.
  17. ^ Steve O'Hear (3 March 2010). "Foursquare checks-in with Vodafone UK". TechCrunch.

External links[edit]