Posts Tagged 'pelephone'

iPhone is coming

Pack you sleeping bags people – the iPhone will be launched in Israel Thursday at 00:01 hours (night between Wed. and Thu.), in a massive sales operation, with stores open the entire day (Thursday). As you might recall, Apple decided, finally, that the Israeli market is important enough to add us to its worldwide distribution.

Will Tel Aviv act like NYC at midnight Thursday? [picture from ars technica]

All 3 cellular providers in Israel have jumped the iPhone wagon of course, and rumors say that each committed to selling 100,000 units a year – meaning 300,000 combined. Now, Israel cellular penetration is about 106% right now, which means that Cellcom, Orange and Pelephone will have to offer lucrative programs and trade-in deals so consumers will give us their current 3G phone and buy a new iPhone 3GS.

The companies are keeping the tight ‘no-comment’ policy, probably governed by Apple, and refusing to release any information about the iPhone – prices, programs, marketing, etc – but that hasn’t stopped the local eco-system from working hard over the past 3-4 months, developing apps for anything from news, bulletin boards, finance, radio, GPS and more.

I for one, am curious to see how the 3 providers will differentiate their iPhone operations, and how the market will behave. Although the iPhone officially hits Israel in 3 days, there are some 60,000 devices here, jail-broken of course, with Hebrew support – which pretty much cover the early adopters and gadgets lovers. Selling 300,000 devices a year is a tough task, and one thing is for sure: it’s gonna be an interesting year.

Orange StartApp – iPhone Contest

iPhone party

It’s no secret that Apple’s iPhone has revolutionized the mobile scene, in all three fronts: device makers, cellular operator and consumers. In Israel there are some 50,000 iPhones, all purchased abroad of course – the local Apple distributor, iDigital, is not bringing the coveted device.

In July 2009 the 3 largest cellular operators (Cellcom, Orange and Pelephone) in Israel announced they’ll be bringing the iPhone to Israel, and since then the country is in mini-chaos. Rumors are flying, prices are still un-known, apps developers are in high demand, marketing campaigns are on hold and everyone are waiting to see when will the iPhone hit the stores and at what cost. Presumably each operator committed to selling 100,000 devices a year (300,000 together), a serious amount – considering Israel’s best-seller, Nokia’s N95, sold 150,000 devices in 18 months. Since Apple are overseeing the marketing campaign, the main differentiators in my opinion will be the overall packaging and service – which operator will create the best eco-system around it to support its iPhone users.

Orange will kick-off an interesting contest next week, Orange StartApp, in which 3 winning developers will receive 10,000 US$ each and 1 of them will get a full Orange campaign to promote its iPhone application in Israel. The contest will start Monday Sep. 21st for 3 months (until Dec. 21st), and any developer with an account at Apple Store can submit his/her applications in 1 of 3 categories: Entertainment, Business and Location and Local Content.

Orange definitely took a step ahead of the pack, by harnessing the power of the developers community – one of the iPhone’s key success factors. The operator that will build a bigger eco-system around it, will probably win more votes, not to mention ‘calling shot-gun’ on the local developers community. With Apple controlling every move of the launch, the 3 operators have very little space to navigate and diffrentiate themselves – Winter is gonna be very interesting, that’s for sure.

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Pelephone goes Mobile with IBM WebSphere Portal

Always glad to post success stories and best practices, especially when there’s press involved. Pelephone Communications, one of Israel’s top 3 cellular operators, has launched its new cellular portal (for a small portion of its customers), running IBM WebSphere Portal. This is a great win for IBM Israel, and some of you are more familiar with the details. Pelephone’s 2.1 millions customers are already reaping the benefits of the upgraded portal, with a wealth of content and information, such as TV, Music Videos, Sports, Entertainment and News. C-Soft, an IBM Business Partner, was our partner for this great project, estimated at $250k.

Since the original article is in Hebrew, some highlights:
The new portal performs full adaptation of the content based on the device’s screen size and browsing capabilities. The new cellular portal consumes content from a mobile content management system, that handles the content for both of Pelephone’s networks (CDMA and EV-DO).

Ilan Alter, Mgr. of Cellular Applications, Pelephone:
The new cellular portal is a more stable and efficient platform, that allows us to introduce innovative services for our customers, in shorter development cycles.

Ofer Friedman, Pelephone Communications Account Exec, IBM:
Pelephone’s approach is to supply the customers’ needs, by creating an accessible world of content. We simply delivered the right platform to accomplish that.

Daniel Melka, Telco Executive, IBM:
IBM WebSphere Portal provides an optimal solution in terms of operating flexibility and future growth, that are required from Pelephone, in managing the wealth of information and content they provide.

Pelephone Communications
The People – Pelephone launches new cellular portal based on IBM WebSphere Portal technology
Web Portal Software from IBM –

Mobile & Media Consultant. I help startup companies launch products to the consumer market. Reach out: dvir.reznik [at]



This is my personal blog. The postings here do not represent the thoughts, intentions, plans or strategies of my past employers or of my clients. It is solely my opinion.