Vodafone has become the first mobile phone operator to launch their own branded eBook and audiobook store as part of their Vodafone Live! service.
The store, powered by GoSpoken.com, follows similar offerings from handset manufacturers but is the first to be offered directly by an operator. GoSpoken.com is expected to announce further tie-ups with T-Mobile and Orange in the coming weeks.
Book purchases will be billed to the customer’s mobile phone bill making the buying process simple, secure and seamless for the user. More than 10,000 eBooks will be available to the majority of handsets connected with Vodafone UK, and eventually the whole Vodafone user base.
Discussing the launch of the new service, Tom McLennan, Head of Music at Vodafone UK said: “Mobile books constitute a new growth opportunity and are an exciting addition to the range of content already on Vodafone Live!
The tie-up is the first major announcement by GoSpoken.com since parent company Mobcast secured investment from Japanese mobile book giant, For-Side.com in December.
Co-founded by author and former-SAS member Andy McNab, Mobcast has signed a number of foreign language deals and recently co-operated with Blackberry in researching how technology can be used to develop literacy levels in schools.
CEO Tony Lynch said: “We’re now seeing customers buy books on a weekly basis – this is something that is catching on. One satisfied customer purchased and read 10 Mills & Boon books in 10 days over Christmas.”