BEIJING, April 18, 2005 ¨C The National Basketball Association (¡°NBA¡±) has launched the first-ever mobile fantasy sports game in China. The Fantasy NBA 05 Pick 'N Win game, developed by Mtone Wireless Corporation (¡°Mtone Wireless¡±) , will be promoted with China Mobile Communications Corporation (CMCC) and marks the first such offering since the NBA-CMCC strategic alliance was announced a week ago.
The interactive tournament revolves around the 2005 NBA Playoffs , which begin on April 24, 2005 (Beijing Time).
The first real-time interactive platform between NBA basketball games and NBA fans in China , the Fantasy NBA ¡®05 Pick 'N Win game will al l ow users to experience the excitement of the NBA and participate directly through their mobile phone. Users will have the option of playing the game using either SMS (Short message service) or WAP (wireless application protocol) enabled mobile phones.
NBA fans in China can sign up for the Fantasy NBA '05 Pick ¡®N Win game directly from their mobile phones by sending a text message with ¡°NBA¡± to ¡°1818¡± (China Mobile). Fans can win prizes including NBA basketballs, team jerseys , and basketball shoes by answering questions based on the upcoming 2005 NBA Playoffs. The p rizes sponsored by Reebok and Spalding will be awarded during each of the four rounds of the playoffs, culminating with the Grand Prize Award at the conclusion of the Finals 2005. Users with the top ten overall scores generated throughout the entire playoffs will each receive a Grand Prize Award prize consisting of an NBA gifts package and RMB 3,000 in cash. By registering to the Fantasy NBA '05 Pick ¡®N Win game, users will have access to a variety of information content such as team rosters, box scores, game schedules, and player and team updates.
¡° We're delighted to launch this interactive mobile game just in time for the 2005 NBA Playoffs,¡± said Mark Fischer, Managing Director of NBA China. ¡°The game's wireless format allows millions of NBA fans in China to access our first-ever official fantasy game here via their mobile phones.¡±
¡°The launch of this groundbreaking NBA product is in line with our mission of providing the most exciting, innovative, interactive content to our mobile phone users,¡± said Victor Wang, CEO and President of Mtone Wireless. ¡°The launch of the Fantasy NBA '05 Pick ¡®N Win game will provide a single platform to satisfy the passion of our users for the NBA and their thirst for the latest in wireless entertainment.¡±
The game format is as follows:
Choose your NBA Champion:
All users will select a team to win The Finals from the pool of NBA playoff teams. The further your team advances into the playoffs, the higher your point score.
If your pick to win The Finals is one of the top four ranked teams in either conference, you will earn 10 points if your team advances into the second round, an additional 10 points if your team advances into the third round, an additional 20 points if your team advances to The Finals, and an additional 40 points if your team wins The Finals.
If your pick to win The Finals is one of the teams seeded 5th through 8th in either conference, you will earn 20 points if your team advances into the second round, an additional 20 points if your team advances into the third round, an additional 40 points if your team advances to The Finals, and an additional 80 points if your team wins The Finals.
Re-Selecting your Finals selection: If your pick to win The Finals gets eliminated, the user has the option of re-submitting another pick from the remaining play-off teams. The same scoring above shall apply.
Daily Pick 'N Win game:
For every scheduled playoff game, users can earn additional points by predicting which team will win. Users will earn one point just for participating and one additional point for successfully predicting the winner.
Future offerings in the pipeline
Mtone Wireless and the NBA plan to launch new services to coincide with the start of the 2005-2006 NBA season. A virtual manager interactive game targeted at hard-core NBA fans will allow users to assemble and manage teams based on the real life performance of NBA players. A Pick 'N Win game targeted at casual NBA fans will allow users to participate through a question and answer format.
About the NBA
Since its founding in 1946, the NBA has truly become a global phenomenon that transcends national boundaries. With 30 teams in the United States and Canada, NBA games and related programming are broadcast to 214 countries in 43 languages via 157 telecasters; they are one of the largest suppliers of sports television and Internet programming in the world. NBA.com, with more than half of all visits to the site coming from fans outside the United States, has nine language-specific international destinations for fans around the world. At the start of the 2004-05 season, NBA rosters featured 81 international players from 35 countries and territories. The NBA is a recognized leader in global sports marketing with 13 offices around the world.
About Mtone Wireless Corporation
Mtone Wireless is one of the largest mobile online interactive entertainment service providers in China. Founded in Silicon Valley in 1994, Mtone offered the very first SMS and WAP services in China for mobile phones in 1999 and 2000, respectively. Today, Mtone provides its several millions of customers with a portfolio of entertainment services, especially mobile online games, that span across SMS, WAP, MMS, IVR and K-java platforms. Mtone has built a nationwide distribution channel through partnerships with over 70 provincial mobile carriers and marketing activities in the top 200 cities in China.