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Press Release Friday April 16, 2004

8 44 22 - Millionaire on the Move

Mobile phone users can play the ‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Telephone Game’ simply by dialling 8 44 22. Players can win cash prizes up to £50,000!

Celador International, the maker of the hit show, has joined forces with speech applications expert Eckoh Technologies and mobile solutions expert Hybyte to offer what is the FIRST EVER VOICE SHORT DIAL PRODUCT IN THE MARKET. This means that where short dial was previously only available for text-message based interactive games it is now available for voice based interactive games and other exciting voice-driven applications.

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? host Chris Tarrant says:

“The new Telephone Game is a fantastic way for Millionaire fans to play from home. And what better incentive to get those fingers dialling than £50,000 in cash!”

Prize Structure & Call Costs

The game runs for 12 weeks. Each day there is a £100 prize for the fastest person to answer the first three questions correctly; there’s a £200 prize for the fastest person to answer the first six questions correctly; and there’s a £300 prize for the fastest person to answer 10 questions correctly. Just like on the show players have access to three Lifelines.

There is a weekly prize of £1,000 for the fastest player to answer all questions correctly. And, at the end of the 12-week period there is a prize of £50,000 for the overall fastest correct player. Opted-in players receive occasional text message updates about the game.

The questions are taken from a database of more than 2,000 and are randomly generated by a computer depending on the prize level. Questions are set by the same team who set questions for the actual ITV1 show.

Calls cost a flat rate of 60p per minute and the average call lasts four minutes. For the first time ever the price per minute is fixed no matter what mobile network the call is made through. Transparent pricing, inclusive of network charges, has finally arrived….

Bruce Vandenberg, Celador International’s Director of Interactive Media said:

“We’re delighted to partner with Eckoh and Hybyte to offer the first shortcode Millionaire game. Shortcodes have rapidly become content owners’ preferred choice for mobile entertainment and to be able to offer Millionaire fans an easy, convenient and reliable way to play their favourite game from their mobile will certainly reap rewards for the brand.”

Nick Philpot Chief Operations Officer at Eckoh said:

“With this first new voice shortcode the Millionaire Telephone Game is now truly available to play anywhere at any time, just as we originally conceived it. The scope for voice services delivered via shortcode to mobile audiences is potentially massive, and this is a fantastic product to launch this new market with.”

Hybyte Director Matt Barbieri added:

"It has been challenging to provision the same 8 44 22 short dial on all the major mobile networks for the initial launch but we believe customers and the exciting Millionaire brand will greatly benefit from having a
standardised mobile charging mechanism and recognisable access number."

Marketing The Service

Television ads created by Resolution are being shown on ITV, Channel 4, GMTV and BSKYB Networks. The service is also supported with information at the end of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? broadcasts on ITV1 each Saturday and ITV2 each Sunday.

Radio ads created by Wild Tracks are being aired across the nationwide Capital Radio Network and Wireless Group outlets including Talk Sport.

Newspaper advertising has been taken with titles including The Guardian, The Mirror and The Daily Star.

Acumen Media planned the campaign and bought the space.

About Celador International

Celador International leads the way in creating, licensing and distributing some of the world’s best-loved television and entertainment brands. Pulling in audiences of hundreds of millions of viewers around the world, its on-screen formats are synonymous with quality entertainment and commercial success. Off-screen, it’s the name behind a wide range of incredibly successful consumer products, brand promotions and compelling interactive entertainment experiences.

Within Celador International there are primarily four departments: Format & Programme Sales, Consumer Products, Marketing and Interactive Media. With talented teams in each of these areas, Celador International has the proven expertise to license formats worldwide and conceive and launch a range of products, promotions and interactive media applications that give formats a life and revenue away from the television screen and into the interactive arena and high street.

About Eckoh

Eckoh Technologies plc is one of Europe’s leading speech application service providers. Eckoh Technologies plc designs, builds, hosts and manages Speech Solutions for large corporations and organisations using ASR (Advanced Speech Recognition) and IVR (Interactive Voice Response) technologies. It is a leading UK service provider and infrastructure owner/operator, and intends to exploit the anticipated growth in demand for Speech Solutions across Europe. See

About Hybyte

Hybyte Solutions and Services Ltd provides mobile services to a diverse selection of clients, from television production companies to car manufacturers and public service providers. It provides an off-the-shelf white label platform - AirByteÔ - which can be integrated with existing and new solutions. See


For further information, interviews or images please contact
Craig Morrison or Henry Postan at 86 PR
T. 020 7229 1958
E. or

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