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Nokia, Intuit team up to push SMEs

Mobile phone maker Nokia and financial software house Intuit have teamed up to address some of the needs of 500 million small and medium enterprise around the world.

Commentators speculated this could herald the advent of localised "push marketing", whereby mobile phone users might send and be sent messages informing them of sales or special offers in their vicinity.

The joint venture would deliver its first fruits before the year end, Mary McDowell, Nokia's EVP for mobile phones, and Alex Lintner, Intuit's president for mobile, said on Wednesday.

They said the new venture would draw on the strengths of Nokia in mobile phones, marketing and distribution, and Intuit's strength and reputation among SMEs to deliver new services to SMEs.

The two spokesmen gave no details of new products, but said they would leverage new mobile phone capabilities such as location-awareness and mapping. Lintner added it would involve "front office" activities.

McDowell said the move should win the approval of mobile network operators as it would help them to increase the average revenue per user they received from SME customers.

Journalists discussing the announcement said the announcement could be about localised "push marketing", whereby subscribing SMEs might send messages informing mobile phone users in their vicinity of sales or special offers.

However, this could raise important privacy issues, as noted earlier by Sir Tim Berners-Lee, they said.


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