All of those messages typically confined to the desktop are about to be unleashed with Ogo™ - a radically new, hip, and affordable mobile messaging device for the masses, particularly teens and young adults. Introduced today and available exclusively from AT&T Wireless, Ogo is the first and only wireless messaging device to provide unlimited instant messaging (IM) and email from all three leading providers - AOL, MSN, and Yahoo! - plus text messaging, all in a sleek, simple-to-use device.
At an affordable device price of $99 (after $30 mail-in rebate) with unlimited messaging plans starting at only $17.99 per month, Ogo provides customers with a wireless messaging device priced for the typical consumer. Ogo-ers will be able to experience instant messaging and email services in a dramatically different way than most Americans do today. Ogo gives customers the freedom to stay connected to their online communities while on-the-go.
Ogo's design requirements and all other elements of its service experience were created and directed by AT&T Wireless. While designed specifically for multiple messaging applications, the company expects instant messaging users to be among Ogo's earliest adopters, since the device offers a near desktop-like IM experience. According to figures released by the Pew Internet and Life Project earlier this month, there are currently more than 53 million IM users in the US today, and 24% of them send more instant messages than email messages.*
"With Ogo, we are creating an entirely new category and the next 'must have' device in the consumer electronics space," said Andre Dahan, president of AT&T Wireless Mobile Multimedia Services. "Unlike many of today's disappointing multi-purpose wireless devices, we created Ogo to do one thing - mobile messaging - extraordinarily well. Ogo doesn't pretend to be 'all things to all people,' and is not bogged down by hardly-used features or an out-of-reach price tag. Instead, Ogo offers the most desirable mobile applications, on a smartly-designed device that most people can afford."
Designed to appeal to the youth market and consumers of all ages, AT&T Wireless believes that Ogo may benefit millions of parents who simply want to reclaim their home computers. "With Ogo, parents no longer have to contend with those endlessly long IM sessions of teenagers and twenty-somethings," Dahan continued. "And, today's youth no longer have to choose between 'logging-on' or 'heading-out' since Ogo lets them do both at the same time."
In addition to its messaging applications and low price, Ogo's appealing design and patent-pending technology offers a variety of features to make mobile messaging fun and easy. Ogo's unique clamshell case opens to reveal a large, color screen and full keypad with "hot keys" to all major messaging functions. With the click of a button, Ogo-ers can read mail, compose messages, access IM contact lists, insert emoticons, and view all open messages at a glance. In addition, customers can get themselves up and running on Ogo by simply turning it on and following the on-screen activation wizard - bypassing the hassle of an in-store activation process.
OGO KEY FEATURES & HIGHLIGHTS
Ogo is packed with features, including:
▪"Clamshell" design unfolds to display large, color screen and keypad;
▪Full QWERTY keypad and 8-way navigation joystick pad;
▪4K color display;
▪Compact size and weight: 11.5 cm x 7.5 cm x 2.5 cm (closed) and 4.8 ounces;
▪Special "hot keys" for simple navigation --- including a special "emoticon" button for inserting emoticons into IM chats and an "Ogo" button to view all active messages and chats on one screen for easy multitasking;
▪Instant messaging on all three leading providers --- enables users to view and conduct unlimited chat sessions with buddies on Yahoo!, MSN, and AOL® instant messaging services;
▪E-mail on all three leading providers --- send and receive unlimited email from Yahoo!, MSN and ▪AOL® accounts;
▪Text messaging or SMS (Short Message Service) --- send and receive unlimited text domestic messages to and from standard wireless phones;
▪Consolidated inbox --- view all e-mail and text messages in a consolidated mailbox or sort by individual account;
▪Special animated features --- Assign unique sounds and visual animations to different IM friends/contacts so users hear a different sound when each IM contact comes on-line or sends a message;
▪Access to e-mail from other select Internet Service Providers and POP3 accounts at no additional charge;
▪No annual service contract --- automatic credit card payment for new activations;
▪"Grab-n-Go" self-activation --- on-device activation wizard gets users up and running themselves.
ON-BOARD WITH OGO
In bringing Ogo to market, AT&T Wireless teamed with a number of world-class technology companies - from the major desktop email/IM service providers to custom application developers and manufacturers. AT&T Wireless said the combined expertise and services of these companies enables Ogo to provide a complete messaging solution for today's mobile consumers and a truly unique hardware and software platform for the future.
"The Ogo is uniquely designed and ideally priced for the generation that has literally grown up on instant messaging and sees email as their primary mode of written communication," said Himesh Bhise, vice president and general manager, AOL Mobile, America Online, Inc. "We are very pleased to have worked with AT&T Wireless to offer our members and users such a convenient and flexible extension of the AOL® Mail and AOL Instant Messenger services."
"MSN's goal is to bring our customers closer to the people and information that matter most to them. We're thrilled to work with AT&T Wireless to help make this connection real for our customers, even while on the go," said Brian Arbogast, corporate vice president for the MSN Communications Platform at Microsoft Corp. "Whether it's checking their Hotmail or keeping in touch via MSN Messenger, with Ogo, MSN customers will have their families and friends right at their fingertips."
"Yahoo!'s services are essential to the lives of millions of people, and AT&T Wireless' new Ogo gives us another way to be there for our customers when they are on the move," said Doug Garland, senior vice president, broadband and mobile services, Yahoo! Inc. "We are excited to give our loyal consumers a new, easy way to access our leading Yahoo! Mail and Yahoo! Messenger services on the latest mobile device. Ogo is really designed to appeal to young consumers who have grown up using both the desktop and mobile messaging."
After developing the idea for Ogo internally at AT&T Wireless, the company selected IXI Mobile Inc., www.ixi.com, to manage overall development and delivery of Ogo's software and hardware based on their PMG® (Personal Mobile Gateway) technology. In addition, custom middleware software from OZ, www.oz.com, enables device interoperability between Ogo and the major email and instant messaging service platforms.
IXI Mobile joined forces with AT&T Wireless
Leveraging the flexibility of the IXI-Connect OS platform, IXI was able to deliver the device, based on AT&T Wireless’ specifications, in a fraction of the time typically needed to develop a product of this kind. Andre Dahan, president of AT&T Wireless Mobile Multimedia Services commented: “We have been working very closely with IXI Mobile to bring Ogo to market, and it is a testament to their technology and professionalism that this has been achieved so quickly.” He went on to say that “going forward, PMG technology gives us the flexibility to expand our product offering with additional devices and services that appeal to our customers.”
Ogo is based on IXI-Connect OS, a complete operating system solution optimized for feature phones and data-centric mobile devices. The IXI-Connect OS platform and tool suite enabled rapid development of the complete software solution, including advanced services such as instant messaging and multiple email clients – balancing the portals’ unique requirements. In addition, the OS allowed AT&T Wireless to control the product’s branding and tailor the user experience. The device’s PMG technology facilitates the seamless addition of future mobile companion devices.
Amit Haller, CEO and co-founder of IXI Mobile commented: “AT&T Wireless has created a new and innovative category with mass consumer appeal and IXI was pleased to bring that vision to market. As well as being a mass-market introduction for IXI-Connect OS, this is another example of the continued excitement around PMG technology and PMG-enabled devices.”
Explore further: Measuring on ice: Researchers create 'smart' ice skating blade