UK-based retailer the Carphone Warehouse will be shipping certain Android phones with the SparkXL custom launcher as standard, according to a press release from developer HipLogic. The ad-supported homescreen replacement includes feeds from social networks and news sites, along with weather information and an optional "deals" feed.
Some Android devices (Carphone has yet to announce specific models) will ship with SparkXL set as the default launcher. On other devices, the retailer will offer SparkXL to customers via its "Walk Out Working" in-store setup program. The full press release can be found after the jump.
May 5, 2011 (FREMONT) – HipLogic, today announced a partnership with The Carphone Warehouse with the launch of *Spark XL, a Real-time Home screen for Android. *Spark XL will now be available on Android phones via The Carphone Warehouse’s Walk Out Working service at its retail stores, will also come preloaded on select hand sets and tablets. The deal will launch in the UK with plans to expand to additional European countries.
*Spark XL is also available for free download by clicking here or at http://sparkxl.com as well as at www.carphonewarehouse.com. It is a modern mobile portal that streamlines content discovery and provides at a glance access to social media, content, sports scores and news. Android users can now stay connected to the things they care about most – right from their Home screen. From updating social status’ in both Facebook and Twitter, to discovering the latest breaking news and sports scores to feeding daily deals cravings, *Spark XL is the ultimate mash-up of content and functionality.
“We’re excited that so many customers of The Carphone Warehouse customers will benefit from the enhanced user experience on Android handsets provided by Spark XL.” said Mark Anderson, CEO of HipLogic. We believe that The Carphone Warehouse will benefit from an increase in customer affinity due to the enhanced discovery and engagement that Spark XL offers to their customers.”
As the UK’s largest independent mobile phone retailer, The Carphone Warehouse is dedicated to delivering the best mobile content and services to its customers. Increasingly, these customers are making the switch to smartphones and the *Spark XL app helps enhance Android operating system for customers. *Spark XL features a content rich, real-time interface that gives consumers access all the content, media, and functionality they want in a clean and organized format.
Rikesh Desai, Head of Digital Services for The Carphone Warehouse said, “We recently announced the launch of our Walk Out Working program, a service designed to help new smartphone users get the most out of their devices through in-store set up and training. We see *Spark XL as the perfect compliment to Walk Out Working – providing new Android customers with a clean, robust and content rich experience that facilitates content discovery and sharing.”
As part of the service, The Carphone Warehouse will offer to install *Spark XL onto customer devices and showcase it as a great way to interact with their Android device – connecting them to their social networks on Twitter and Facebook, delivering live news, entertainment, weather, sports scores and Groupon deals.
Pre-installation on handsets and tablets
*Spark XL will come pre-loaded as the default Home screen for select handsets and tablets sold at The Carphone Warehouse.