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BEIJING, March 9, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ChinaNet Online Holdings, Inc. ("ChinaNet") (Nasdaq:CNET), a leading full-service B2B fully integrated Internet service provider for small and medium-sized enterprises ("SMEs") to expand their sales networks in China, today announced the successful launch of a mobile platform, including SMS text functionality to drive increased traffic to its 28.com portal.
ChinaNet's mobile platform has been WAP formatted to display franchisor information for all wireless phones, including smartphones, which have direct access to 28.com. The new platform began initial testing in December 2010 and was formally rolled out to customers on March 1, 2011. To expand this offering, ChinaNet expects to launch an Android, iPad and iPhone related application by August 2011 which will enable users to seamlessly view 28.com across multiple mobile devices.
"Initial results to our new mobile platform have exceeded our expectations," said Mr. Handong Cheng, Chairman and CEO of ChinaNet. "In its three months of testing, the mobile platform with the SMS text message alert feature increased traffic to 28.com by up to 20%. We are enthusiastic about the potential benefits of the new mobile platform as we roll this service out across our entire client platform and expect this new service to increase our Internet revenue by at least 10% during 2011. We are excited to be able to offer this capability to our clients, and in conjunction with additional new services coming online in 2011, it will continue to drive incremental website traffic while allowing us to increase our revenue per client."
SMS Text Messaging Capability
The new mobile platform allows ChinaNet to send SMS text messages to entrepreneurs, alerting them to new franchise opportunities posted to 28.com. Users can easily click on an embedded link, and depending on what type of handset and service they use, it will take them either to the 28.com mobile WAP or main 28.com website where they access additional information. ChinaNet is currently the only company in its sector to offer mobile and SMS text messaging features for its website. SMS is a clear differentiator and is an effective communication tool because it has significantly less competition than traditional emails. The rapid response rate to messages increases the number of qualified leads from entrepreneurs who are seeking business opportunities.