MovieTickets.com Takes Consumers to the Movies Via Wireless

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Consumers can purchase movie tickets on the wireless Web through a service launched this week by MovieTickets.com.


The service enables consumers to look up showtimes and purchase tickets at 5,000 screens. Customers can pick up tickets at participating theaters by stating a confirmation number.


Consumers will be able to access the service via Sprint PCS Wireless phones, AT&T Wireless Services phones and Verizon Wireless phones at the wireless Web site, wap.hollywood.com. The company has deals pending with additional wireless carriers.


"The wireless service is simply an extension of what we have done in the wired world," said Eric Illowsky, executive vice president at Hollywood.com, Boca Raton, FL, one of the parent companies of MovieTickets. He said MovieTickets sells more than 2,000 tickets per week.


"If you go out to dinner and still want to make the show afterwards, all you have to do is log on to the wireless Web site. It's a convenience thing," Illowsky said. "Movie tickets are the ideal mass-appeal utilitarian item for the wireless Web."


MovieTickets.com plans to monetize the wireless service through interstitial ad sales on the wireless site, Illowsky said, adding that it is too early in the process to be more specific on advertising strategies. The showtimes and listings service, which has been available through Hollywood.com on the wireless site, has registered about 245,000 user sessions per month, he said.


"We are not monetizing the wireless Web site yet, but we are poised to implement," he added.


MovieTickets is developing a wireless section on its Web site to alert its users to the new service. "The most important form of marketing is placing the service on the wireless providers' opening menus," Illowsky said. The wireless Web site is currently listed under the entertainment category on the AT&T Wireless portal page.


MovieTickets.com was launched in May 2000 as a joint venture by AMC Entertainment, a motion pictures exhibitor; Hollywood.com, an entertainment-focused Web site; National Amusements, a theatrical exhibitor; and Viacom.
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