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Last Updated: Tuesday, 2 September, 2003, 16:06 GMT 17:06 UK
BT pushes broadband for families
BT Yahoo's advertising campaign
Mikey and Jimmy in BT Yahoo's advertising campaign
BT is planning to spend 10 million to promote its new broadband venture with Yahoo.

Called BT Yahoo, it aims to compete with other broadband providers such as AOL by offering personalised homepages and content bundled in a browser.

BT provides the access and billing while Yahoo has the content and applications like instant messaging, streaming news and entertainment.

The campaign to rebrand BT Openworld as BT Yahoo will run from 9 September to March 2004 and will feature two day-dreaming geeks from the 1970s.

Dig it?

The characters, Jimmy and Mikey, dream of how "cool" it would to hook up their mate to their computer through his phone so they can show him what they are looking at.

They "dig" the idea of sharing what they like with friends and they call it "inter-networking".

10 sub accounts for family log-ons
Changeable homepage colour schemes and layout
Customised features
Pop-up blocker
50MB e-mail storage
100MB online storage

The campaign reflects the people-power approach the partnership is trying to adopt, letting users choose their content and organise their homepage with click and drag functions.

In an NOP survey commissioned to coincide with the launch, 59% of people said they should be able to customise the net to fit what they want.

Duncan Ingram, Managing Director of BT Openworld, thinks the partnership will make the net "empowering".

"Through the launch of BT Yahoo Broadband, we are not only stealing a march on our competitors but elevating the whole online experience to a completely new level," he said at the launch of the venture.

The service offers security features designed to appeal to families including a built-in firewall, automatic updating anti-virus software, anti-spam features and parental controls on internet and instant messaging access.

Parents can set time limits for their children and restrict access on a number of levels, which activate when different users log on.

Ambitious targets

BT Yahoo costs the same as BT Openworld and will still have a 512Kbps ADSL connection speed.

However, as a service provider they will be able to sign up to BT's 1Mps trials from October.

From Tuesday, new customers can register for the service and BT Openworld subscribers can upgrade for free, keeping their existing e-mail address.

As a wholesaler, BT has ambitious targets for broadband, hoping to increase its customers to five million by 2005.

About half of these are connected through rival service providers such as Freeserve and AOL but using a BT telephone line.

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27 Aug 03  |  Technology
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14 Jul 03  |  Business
BT boss bets on broadband
20 Feb 03  |  Technology

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