Hot on the heels of a freshly minted public beta
, Zumobi has paired up with former parent Microsoft to distribute its tiled content browsing client with Windows Mobile. Zumobi's press release is extraordinarily vague (see the full text after the break) and we can't really make out how far-reaching the distro deal is, but even if only a modest percentage of future WinMo handsets feature Zumobi's client built in, you've gotta figure that it's a huge win for the start-up -- if you can really call a Microsoft spinoff a "start-up" -- that's definitely looking for all the publicity it can get right now. Anyone have a chance to fiddle around with the beta yet?
SEATTLE – January 22, 2008 – Zumobi today announced a partnership deal with Microsoft. Under terms of the business agreement, Microsoft will distribute the award-winning Zooming User Interface and mobile widget platform with Windows Mobile. This distribution agreement builds on the content partnerships Zumobi announced in December.
"Currently shipping on devices from more than 48 device makers with 125 mobile operators in 55 countries, Windows Mobile is one of the most accessible and familiar mobile computing platforms," said Eric Hertz, CEO of Zumobi. "This strategic partnership benefits all of our constituencies – consumers, developers, content providers, carriers and advertisers – and enables us to continue building momentum quickly with our audience of techno-culturists and mobile business users."
Today, more than 140 devices in the marketplace worldwide are based on Windows Mobile. Windows Mobile-based phones are designed for people to be productive on-the-go, all while having the ability to stay in touch with colleagues and friends. Windows Mobile-based phones also include mobile versions of Office Outlook, Office Word, Office Excel and Office PowerPoint and Internet Explorer, giving people access to critical business data such as documents, contacts, e-mail, calendar items and tasks. Zumobi is compatible with Windows Mobile versions 5.0 and newer.
"Zumobi originated in our IP Ventures program as the work of a world-class research team, and demonstrates how Microsoft works with innovative independent companies to provide people with some of the best sets of services and applications available," said John O'Rourke, General Manager, Mobile Communications Business at Microsoft. "Zumobi is a strong complement to Windows Mobile in that both it and Microsoft offer our customers innovative yet easy ways to access all their information while they're on the go -making their phone the best companion for their entire life."
Zumobi revolutionizes the way people access, retrieve and share Web-based content on their mobile phones. Through an intuitive, lush user interface, Zumobi allows people to easily "bounce" in and out of snack-sized bits of the entertainment they want and to stay on top of the information they need throughout the day, while offering advertisers a better way to connect with consumers through their mobile phones. Zumobi offers content from a broad range of mobile widgets or Tiles, including many from partners such as MTV Networks, AccuWeather.com®, Traffic.com, FlightStats.com and OTOlabs, who developed Tiles for Vail Resorts and Fox Television's "Family Guy."
Zumobi is the open platform that is reinventing the mobile content experience. A highly-acclaimed innovator in the mobile industry, Zumobi provides developers with a device-neutral platform for building and deploying rich content for mobile phones; enables a better way to connect consumers and the brands that define their lives; delivers a new set of benefits that carriers can offer to their customers; and gives consumers an experience that makes their mobile phones more useful and fun. More information on Zumobi is available at www.Zumobi.com.