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Just how much will you be able to do at Disney World with a cell phone?

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Published: November 12, 2008 at 10:41 AM

I'm on the road and don't have time for a full post but I wanted to let folks talk about the new Disney/Verizon deal that's all over the news.

Basically, at some point in the future it will allow Disney theme park guests with Verizon network phones to access attraction wait times via their phones, as well as to get park maps and "Pal Mickey"-style messages as they roam the park.

If you aren't on Verizon, you are out of luck. Verizon's deal starts next year in Epcot with a Kim Possible tie-in. No ETA that I've found for the cell phone functionality.

Thoughts? (I'd give a link but I'm writing on my iPhone and can't copy and paste.)

Update: Here's the release.

Readers' Opinions

From Joshua Counsil on November 12, 2008 at 11:45 AM
Great idea, but it's surprising they didn't do it earlier. As much as I hate cell phones, they can be useful for little things like this.
From Eli Katzman on November 12, 2008 at 12:40 PM
wow... this is surprising and odd...
Oh, that sucks for you robert... you got AT&T. Or do you have another phone?
From Robert Niles on November 12, 2008 at 12:54 PM
No. But , to be honest, I don't see much here that I really need. I have the TPI ratings and reviews on iPhone. I just need to build a GPS- enabled park map now. :-)

As for wait times, well, if those are an issue, you're visiting at the wrong time!

From James Rao on November 12, 2008 at 1:17 PM
Okay, let me get this straight. Steve Jobs runs Disney. Steve Jobs runs Apple. Apple owns the iPhone. The iPhone only works with AT&T. Verizon gets the Disney contract. What am I missing?
From Matt Roseboom on November 12, 2008 at 1:34 PM
Here's a link to the full story:

http://www.attractionsmagazine.com/blog/?p=1130

Of interest is this part...
"While Verizon Wireless customers will have exclusive access to an array of enhanced features, Disney and Verizon are also working to ensure that some mobile information such as dining locations, show times and locations will be available to all parks visitors, regardless of their wireless company."

From Deidre Dennis on November 12, 2008 at 1:36 PM
My husband has Verizon for his work telephone and HATES it. Good coverage, but their service is horrible.

If you're used to going to theme parks, you realize that waiting for an attraction is just one of those things you have to deal with. My cell phone stays in my room and OFF when we're on vacation unless we're in the car or have one of those days where we might be doing different/separate things. One last thing to worry about losing while you're on a ride, or people calling you, too.

From Robert Niles on November 12, 2008 at 4:55 PM
As for the Jobs/Disney/Apple connection....

If there's a strong correlation among Toyota Prius owners, it is that they skew toward Mac/iPod/iPhone versus PC. But Prius' MP3 hook-up is designed for PC-based music players. (iPods work, but they don't display the track information.) Go figure.

Just goes to show that these deals are not (always) made based on board member relationships or customer preferences. It's who pays the most money to close the deal.

From Anthony Murphy on November 12, 2008 at 8:16 PM
Well the Disney Cell Phones went bust so I would be concered as Verizon. Still not as cute as Pal Mickey!

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