OmniSky, SkyGo Link Up

In a move that gives it access to potential clients, wireless marketing firm SkyGo is pairing with mobile applications developer OmniSky to develop a single advertising and publishing solution for wireless Web sites.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based OmniSky provides Internet access for mobile device users — but also provides its own customized “portal” to consumers, with content from a roster of affiliated publishers.

Financial specifications of the partnership were not disclosed.

Through the arrangement with SkyGo, OmniSky will promote its partner’s advertising products and serving technology to those publishers, which include Weather.com, E*Trade, and Yahoo. SkyGo also gets an “in” to push its wireless ad consulting and sales services.

“OmniSky’s service offerings have been hinged upon providing a rich experience for the user,” said Paul Johnson, who is vice president of business development at SkyGo. “Together, we will [provide] consumers with relevant, timely information, and at the same time, offer content providers a new revenue opportunity and the chance to truly maximize this promising medium.”

Meanwhile, SkyGo gains additional clout with advertisers, by offering them access to OmniSky publishers.

In return, SkyGo agrees to integrate OmniSky’s “OneTap” technology into ads it creates for mobile content publishers. The embedded technology allows users to save information from advertisements — like product details or special offers — to another application on their PDA, with one click and without leaving the publisher’s site.

OmniSky gets an undisclosed cut of the revenue from ads using the technology.

“SkyGo enables us to offer a one-stop wireless advertising solution and still remain focused on delivering the best overall wireless experience to our users,” said OmniSky vice president of marketing Kristine Stebbins. “The partnership … will be able to help our content partners deliver wireless advertising that adds value to a consumer’s wireless experience and generates revenues, both for content providers and for OmniSky.”

The partnership comes as the wireless content industry is divided into two camps. For the most part, mobile content is delivered by way of independent sites (through WAP or i-Mode) or via the proprietary portals of mobile carriers (AT&T or Verizon) and access providers like OmniSky.

It’s a state of affairs that calls to mind the early rivalry of America Online’s proprietary system versus the mainstream Web. But theoretically, SkyGo’s platform — which has been in full production only since March — supports both types of content providers.

Accordingly, SkyGo is attempting to increase its profile with both camps, unlike carrier-focused plays like Avesair.

And as a result, this latest deal strengthens SkyGo’s outreach to publishers who are delivering their content via proprietary portals, while the company already has an existing reseller agreement in place with site rep and ad network AdSociety, based in Hong Kong.

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