WidSets goes out of beta

WidSetsSo far we’ve mentioned Nokia’s Java ME-based mobile widget platform, WidSets, at least a dozen times. In case you haven’t figured all this time it was in the beta stage. That’s about to change, as Nokia has announced that it’s ready for the prime time.

Initially WidSets users may not notice any difference — except maybe the overall improved usability — but soon enough Nokia will start pushing the ads through the WidSets platform. Yes, Nokia will use the service as an advertising medium and will pre-install the WidSets application in its future devices. In addition, the Finish giant wowed to translate the application to tens of different languages. We’ll see how this (mobile widget advertising) goes…W Full release follows after the jump.

PRESS RELEASE – Nokia today announced that its innovative Internet service called WidSets, launched one year ago, has emerged from Beta to a new service platform. With the new platform WidSets will offer improved usability by localizing mobile clients and improving mobile widget library. WidSets will also bring advertising in as the primary business model. WidSets works on Java enabled handsets from a range of manufacturers and utilizes widgets, so users can have one-click access to real-time online content without needing to use a mobile browser.

“We’ve been delighted with the feedback we’ve had from the Beta trials of WidSets,” said Jarmo Jokinen, Director of WidSets, Nokia Emerging Business Unit. “During that time, we’ve had more than 3 million users register for the WidSets service on more than 300 models of mobile device. We’ve valued the early feedback, which has enabled us to launch a more compelling service for users and content providers.”

The new platform offers a dynamic search feature and an improved widget creation tool for quicker, simpler and more personalized options for creating widgets. And now it is really easy: enter the web address, click to select the feed and then you will have a personal widget! Around 90 percent of the current WidSets’ content is already user generated, but the WidSets team has recently added many new widgets and made it easier for users to find local and also non-English-language content.

The new Explore feature for finding widgets offers an option to perform a live search, filter through recommended widgets, or go through tags or categories, and download them for use on mobile devices.

WidSets now offers a unique advertising model to commercial customers for providing two-way-interaction between the advertiser and their customers or prospects. A great example is a movie theater widget: the user chooses the city they are looking for and can then see what movies are on, in which theater, and whether there are seats available. A perfect match of benefits for movie going consumers, and the advertiser!

On the WidSets website people can review the widgets and see the latest, most popular or top rated widgets and share those with others. And now this can also be done from the mobile device. One of the latest widgets is for AccuWeather.com, which is expected to rapidly become one of the top ranked widgets in the WidSets library.

The WidSets mobile dashboard can also now be shared. This means that when creating a profile, users may share their own dashboard and widgets with the others, and see what the other “WidSeteers” are using as well as how they look like, thanks to the user images available in dashboards.

Nokia plans to pre-install WidSets in tens of millions of mobile phones during 2008, and enabling service support in tens of different languages. The recently unveiled Nokia 8800 Arte which will start shipping in the fourth quarter of 2007 will be the first handset to offer WidSets to its style-conscious consumers. In addition, users can already get started with WidSets via the Download! folder on all Nokia Nseries and Eseries devices.

WidSets works on a wide variety of mobile phone brands, and is already compatible with more than 300 mobile devices. Users can easily download WidSets from www.widsets.com or on their mobile from get.widsets.com.

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