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3G/HSPA

Vodafone's Second Life

9:20 AM -- Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) has taken its marketing strategy to the virtual world and set up its own island on Second Life called Vodafone InsideOut. It's still in beta, but the idea is that Second Lifers in the virtual world can call or text people in the real world. Vodafone aims to bridge the gap between the virtual and real worlds. But does that gap really need to be bridged? (See Smiles, Everyone! Smiles!)

Go to the island and Rachel, whose avatar's name is Lucy, will explain how it all works. With InsideOut, Rachel/Lucy says that people only communicate through their avatar identities and they are assigned virtual phone numbers. The so-called "virtual" phone numbers actually come from a pool of 100 Vodafone numbers from Germany, which could lead to some bill shock if users aren't careful. So far, InsideOut has 64 members.

— Michelle Donegan, Euro Editor Without an Avatar, Unstrung

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