USA NETWORK INTERACTIVE AND NEOPLANET, INC. PARTNER TO CREATE ENHANCED
BROWSERS FOR FANS OF SCI FI, XENA, LEXX AND FARSCAPE
NEW YORK and TEMPE, Ariz. - March 21, 2000 - USA Networks Interactive, a division of USA Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: USAI) which fulfills a variety of commerce, information and entertainment needs for its wired audience, and NeoPlanet, Inc., developer of the industry-leading Internet Desktop, today announced the release of a series of enhanced custom browsers. This partnership allows USA Networks Interactive's entertainment sites to aggressively build on their strong fan bases by utilizing NeoPlanet's cutting-edge technology.
The new browsers, currently available free for downloading at SCIFI.COM. and USANetwork.com, offer the ability to change the look-and-feel of the user interface with customizable themes, or "skins." Once fans install the custom browser, they are able to choose amongst skins for Xena: Warrior Princess, LEXX or Farscape. The skins, unique collections of graphics and audio based on the television shows, can be changed easily with a few mouse clicks. Additional personalized browsers, or "skins," will be developed for programs on SCI FI Channel and Studios USA productions in the near future.
"Through our collaboration with NeoPlanet, we are bringing elements of our users' favorite USA Networks and SCI FI Channel television programs right to their desktop." stated Ben Tatta, senior vice president of USA Networks Interactive. "These browser skins give our fans another tool to express their enthusiasm for our shows online."
The custom browsers are based upon NeoPlanet's enhanced browsing application, which integrates email, search and other enhanced features into a single application created to be more user-friendly than standard browser or online service software.
"Desktop branding is one of the strongest methods of getting in front of the consumer," said Warren Adelman, executive vice president, business operations, NeoPlanet, Inc. "We are proud to partner with USA Networks Interactive in offering this new way to build online brand affinities and offer their audience something useful and fun."
Fan channels featured in the right-hand side of the interface present direct links to USA Network Interactive content. Users can change the look and feel of the skins through the toolbar and build instant messaging fan communities through the NetClubs feature.
The Xena, LEXX, Farscape and general SCI FI browsers feature:
The companies plan to roll out additional fan versions of the applications online this spring. The NeoPlanet application is approximately 2MB and requires Windows 98 or Win 95/NT with IE 4.0 or higher installed. Images of all four custom browsers are available at http://www.scifi.com/freezone/skins/ .
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USA Networks Interactive, a division of USA Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: USAI), fulfills a variety of commerce, information and entertainment needs for is wired audience. Interactive is comprised of several Internet-based entities including SCIFI.COM, USANetwork.com as well as a variety of sites based on Studios USA productions. SCIFI.COM (www.SCIFI.com), a "People's Choice" Webby Award winner, is dedicated to the vast spectrum of science fiction, science fact, fantasy, horror, the paranormal and the unknown, and features original entertainment, daily news, feature stories, commerce, games and ground-breaking special events.
NeoPlanet combines content, communications and community to bring the best of the Internet to the consumer's desktop. The company allows users to reflect their own "Internet Fashion" by customizing NeoPlanet's Internet Desktop through personalized "skins." NeoPlanet features a built in directory of user customizable Content Channels featuring Lycos' leading Internet content allowing users to personalize their surfing experience. Distribution channels include ISPs, OEMs, Web sites and direct marketers. NeoPlanet is free and easy to download at http://www.neoplanet.com. NeoPlanet, Inc. patent pending.