Hold The Phone, Sony Pics On Line One

While the attraction of watching video on a tiny screen still escapes the logic of many cell phone and mobile device users, entertainment companies are chasing the new platform as if it were the hottest new thing since, well, the telephone.

Into the picture now comes Sony Pictures Mobile (a business unit of Sony Pictures Digital Networks) and cell phone giant Vodafone, with an agreement to bring Sony Pics-generated entertainment products and services and original and third-party content, to Vodafone live! customers worldwide. Vodafone live! lets customers use picture messaging, download polyphonic ring tones and color games, and browse branded infotainment from integrated camera phones, through an icon-driven menu.

“Our agreement with Vodafone is one of the largest wireless programs from Sony Pictures Mobile to date, enabling Vodafone to offer our content in at least 13 countries,” says Patrick Kennedy, exec. VP of Sony Pictures Digital Networks.

Initially available on Vodafone live! are games based on the Sony Pictures Ent. properties Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle, Jeopardy! Q*bert, Stuart Little 2, Wheel of Fortune, XXX: Triple Threat, S.W.A.T., Pyramid and Joker’s Wild.

The initial offerings are just the first of what is planned to be a constant stream of entertainment services that will be made available to Vodafone’s customers, including audio and video clips, interactive applications and games.

“We’re looking forward to developing content based on current and upcoming films and television programs, as well as original entertainment and games,” says Ron Geller, senior VP of international networks, Sony Pictures Digital Networks. “Vodafone is a dynamic organization and we’re thrilled to be working with them.”

Among other things, Vodafone owns parts of wireless companies in 28 countries, has partnership agreements in nine others and has access to nearly 120 million customers.