Bell Atlantic Mobile Marks Wireless Industry First
With Grand Opening Of Online Store
Consumers Can Conduct Entire Wireless Purchase On
Company's Web Site
September 17, 1998
BEDMINSTER, NJ -- Starting today, consumers can shop for wireless
from the convenience of their personal computer, as Bell Atlantic Mobile
becomes the first wireless service provider to open a fully automated
"store" on its Web site. By visiting the Bell Atlantic Mobile Online Store
and following a few easy steps, consumers can order and complete the purchase
of wireless service, cellular phones and accessories that fit their needs.
The entire purchase process -- from credit authorization to activation -- is
completed online, in real time. A shopping "spree" can be completed in
five minutes, if the customer knows from the start which products and
services he or she wants.
"Our Online Store is all about giving customers a choice for purchasing our
wireless products and services using a fast, easy-to-use, information-rich
medium," said Debra Carroll, Bell Atlantic Mobile vice president of marketing.
"Just as we offer choices in wireless service plans, we also give our
customers a wide choice in how and where to do business with us. As
Internet commerce becomes increasingly popular with consumers, our
Internet store will become a key sales channel in the years to come."
Bell Atlantic Mobile's Online Store is an electronic one-stop shopping
experience. Orders are processed immediately and shipped that day. Other
carriers' on-line stores only collect customer information and require
follow-up from a live salesperson to complete the order. Shipping and
handling are free and orders will arrive within three business days.
The Online Store sells a range of wireless products and services meeting
the varying needs of wireless users -- including the new DigitalChoice
SingleRateSM plans unveiled last week. The store also sells wireless
accessories, including car lighter adapters, battery chargers, extra batteries
and phone carrying cases.
Much like the sites of popular consumer retailers, Bell Atlantic Mobile's
Online Store is designed to be a comfortable experience for both the
seasoned Web-shopper and the occasional browser. Products and price
plans are clearly merchandized and displayed, and can be placed in a
shopping cart as the shopper moves through the store. There's also "Tips
on Choosing," so shoppers can explore their own unique usage needs and
The Online Store also gives the customer a choice about how much
information they want. At any time, the customer can click to any of the
following locations for more information:
Bell Atlantic Mobile Home Page -- information on Bell Atlantic Mobile
service area, products and services, and customer service.
Online Store Map -- an overview of the Store "aisles."
Shopping Cart -- a review of the customer's order at any time during the
Contact Us -- telephone contact number, feedback section and a link to the
Bell Atlantic Mobile Home Page to find the nearest Communications Store.
Disclosure -- Access to Bell Atlantic Mobile privacy statement, and
explanation of rates and charges.
Cellular Service Agreement -- the company's plain-language service
90-day Right-Price Plan Guarantee
Bell Atlantic Mobile offers a free Service Plan Analysis to ensure its
customers are on the best service plan for their wireless phone usage.
After three months of service, the customer can call Bell Atlantic Mobile
and the company will analyze the customer's usage patterns to date. If it is
less expensive for the customer to be on a different service plan, the
company will switch them to a plan that better matches their usage.
To ensure customer security, the Online Store uses a secure connection to
transmit customer information, including their address, email address and
credit card number, providing private secured communication between the
browser and Bell Atlantic Mobile's Web server. When the customer starts
the purchase process, Bell Atlantic Mobile sets up a secure connection
using SSL (Secure Socket Layer), a widely-used mechanism by electronic
commerce Web sites.
Bell Atlantic Mobile has long been a leader in low-cost distribution within
the wireless industry. Its nearly-200 store chain is the largest network of
wireless-only retail outlets, and rivals the number of stores of some other
Bell Atlantic Mobile owns and operates the largest wireless network in the
East, covering 116,000 square miles, and the largest chain of retail outlets
devoted exclusively to wireless voice, data and paging. Based in
Bedminster, NJ, Bell Atlantic Mobile has 5.7 million customers and 7,000
employees from Maine to Georgia and, through a separate subsidiary, in
the Southwest. Through its "Wireless at Work..." community service
program, the company uses its technology to help individuals and
communities improve security and emergency communications. Bell
Atlantic Mobile's parent is one of the world's largest wireless
communications companies, with domestic operations in 25 states and
international investments in Mexico, Europe and the Pacific Rim. For more
information on Bell Atlantic Mobile visit: www.bam.com; for global
operations visit: href="http://www.bellatlantic.com/worldwide">http://www.bellatlantic.com/worldwide