Blyk: Goodbye, mobile phone bills. Hello, advertising.

Pitching itself as the world’s first advertising-supported phone company, a Finnish company called Blyk plans to roll out a free mobile phone service next summer aimed at 16- to 24-year- olds, first in Britain and then elsewhere in Europe.

"The free mobile phone model is so obvious and attractive that we have been surprised that nobody else tried it before us," said Pekka Ala-Pietila co- founder of the company and a former president of Nokia. "We are just extending the advertising revenue model to phones."

Under the plan, subscribers would fill out a questionnaire on the Internet that includes personal details and interests and then receive a telephone SIM card offering an as yet unspecified number of voice minutes and text messages per month. Advertisements sent to the phone would be based on the answers.

(more)

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