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7/28/2008
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Samsung, GyPSii Sign Social Networking Deal

The deal enables Samsung to beef up its mobile social networking and location-based services.

In a move that will help Samsung increase its presence in location-based services and mobile social networking, the company announced a multiyear deal with GyPSii.

The Amsterdam-based GyPSii has developed a mobile networking platform that utilizes location data. Under the terms of the deal, GyPSii will be provide technology, products, worldwide data center infrastructure, and branding rights to Samsung in a nonexclusive agreement.

The mobile networking service enables users to share geo-tagged content with friends, potentially receive location-based advertising, and interact with other social networks like Facebook. To kick off the deal, a GyPSii application will come pre-loaded on Samsung's upcoming touch-screen smartphone, the Omnia.

"Social networking and location-based services on the mobile phone are now mainstream, so we looked to emerging innovators in the industry to support and deliver these value-added services," said W.S. Lee, Samsung's VP of research and development, in a statement.

GyPSii is currently supported by Symbian, Windows Mobile, and BlackBerry handsets, and it can be accessed through a mobile browser on the iPhone. The company also signed a similar deal last month with Garmin, and applications could potentially show up on the upcoming Nuvifone.

"This distribution and partnership agreement brings GyPSii to millions of new users, enabling us to penetrate new markets, expand our global footprint, and leverage the strength of the Samsung brand to drive marketing, distribution, and new revenue streams," said GyPSii CEO Dan Harple, in a statement.

The agreement comes as many companies are betting that mobile social networking will be a hit with consumers. Nokia recently acquired Plazes to beef up its social networking capabilities, and Facebook and MySpace applications are routinely in the most-downloaded list for Apple's App Store.

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