March 15, 2005 With global mobile telephone users heading for a two billion headcount, the pot of gold at the end of the content delivery rainbow is beckoning content producers around the world to find new and compelling content designed specifically for delivery on what will become the biggest mass medium ever created. Last November we reported on an MMS soap opera designed for mobile telephone users from the same company that brought us Big Brother. Now comes the news that heiresses Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie will extend their outrageous reality series into the wireless space when Verizon Wireless launches "The Simple Life: Interns." Plans call for 26 original one-minute "mobisodes" to be specifically produced for transmission on wireless phones and they feature entirely original material not previously seen on the series.
The mobisodes will become available exclusively through Verizon Wireless' V CAST 3G wireless broadband multimedia service on Wednesday, April 6, 2005. Since the show's January premiere, Verizon Wireless has offered video clip previews of upcoming "The Simple Life: Interns" television broadcast episodes on V CAST.
"The Simple Life: Interns" mobisodes are designed to bring a whole new dimension, and new viewers, to the show as they run on Verizon Wireless' cutting edge V CAST service," said Lucy Hood, News Corp Senior Vice President of Content and Marketing, who oversees Fox's mobile entertainment.
"20th Century Fox Television is delighted to offer the first mobisodes based on a network comedy series available in a format designed specifically for mobile, which we believe will help this hit television show reach an even wider audience."
Produced by "The Simple Life" creators Bunim-Murray Productions, the 26 original mobisodes will feature never-before-seen footage taken from Paris and Nicole's adventures shooting the television series, in which they travel by Greyhound bus around the east coast, stopping along the way to try their hands at a number of diverse internships and staying with a variety of host families.
Mobisodes include all new scenes of Paris and Nicole's exploits as auto mechanics, office managers, airport personnel, and plastic surgery interns as well as their interactions with members of the families they meet along the way. Each mobisode is structured much like the television show on which it is based, with a self-contained story based on the girls' experiences working at one specific job or staying with one family.
Fans of the show will be able to purchase the first eight mobisodes at launch for $0.99 each on select V CAST phones. In the following weeks, fans will be able to download two new mobisodes per week for $0.99 each in conjunction with the broadcast of the television series.
"The Simple Life: Interns" is currently seen by 11.2 million people every week, averaging a 5.1/12 among Adults 18-49 and is currently winning its half hour among all key measures: Adults 18-49, Total Viewers, Adults 18-34/25-54, Teens, Households, Women 18-49/18-34/25-54 and Men 18-49/18-34/25-54.
Jonathan Murray ("The Real World," "Road Rules") is the executive producer of "The Simple Life: Interns," which is a 20th Century Fox Television production in association with Bunim-Murray Productions.
V CAST from Verizon Wireless is America's first 3G wireless broadband multimedia service for consumers, allowing customers to view crystal clear video clips on demand and 3D games because it runs on Verizon Wireless' Evolution Data Optimized (EV-DO) network - the fastest widely available wide- area wireless broadband network in the United States.
For US$15.00 monthly access added to their Verizon Wireless calling plan, customers get V CAST which includes unlimited access to more than 300 regularly updated video clips each day from leading news, sports, weather and entertainment content providers. Unlimited basic short content is included. There are no airtime charges to download, stream or watch V CAST content.
For a limited time, customers who sign up for V CAST receive two months of service free. Customers can also download or stream premium short content, such as music videos, 3D games and "The Simple Life: Interns" mobisodes, available at additional cost.