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[transport-communications] Traffic Alert Service Offered in UK

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  • I95BERNIEW@aol.com
    NatWest UK issued a news release a few days ago announcing a new service they are going to be providing called Zenda. One of the services offered will be
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 2, 1998
      NatWest UK issued a news release a few days ago announcing a new service they
      are going to be providing called "Zenda." One of the services offered will be
      traffic information. As mentioned in the release there is a monthly charge of

      If any of our subscribers in the UK have more information, please send it
      along to the list by sending a message to transport-

      Bernie Wagenblast

      Trial of new service to make sense of the information overload (26 August

      Finding the information you want from telephone helplines, guidebooks,
      listings, directories, the internet and so on can be a time-consuming and
      costly nightmare. A new personalised information service from NatWest promises
      to take the hassle out of your hands by offering a 'one-stop shop' that will
      search out the information for you, and only give you the details you're
      interested in.

      Provisionally called Zenda, the information supplied by the service comes from
      a wide variety of experts, from the AA to the Financial Times. This means
      users can find out many different things through just one unbiased point of

      The first stage of the Zenda trial, which will last for six months, will help
      people manage their personal, everyday information needs and remind them of
      key dates such as birthdays and anniversaries. If the initial trial is
      successful, Zenda could be developed to take the spadework out of managing key
      life events such as organising a wedding, moving house, looking for a new job
      or finding the perfect holiday.

      How to use Zenda - you choose

      Zenda's users - who don't have to be NatWest customers - can choose how to
      contact the service - they don't have to use the same method every time -

      · telephone calls are answered by people - not machines - who are specially
      trained to help users find the information they want;
      · fax to send requests and receive replies;
      · e-mail to and from Zenda, with file attachments
      · in the post useful for bulk information such as travel brochures.

      In future, Zenda could also send messages to pagers and cash machines - ideal
      for the latest football scores, travel disruptions, share prices, concert
      dates and reminders of important dates such as birthdays.

      Tim Jones, Managing Director, Retail Banking Services, said “Innovation is
      vital for us to keep at the forefront of the financial services industry.
      Zenda is a unique, truly innovative service that uses our strengths - NatWest
      is trusted by millions of people to hold confidential information for them and
      manage their financial affairs, and we have vast experience in handling
      truckloads of data.

      “We've had a really positive reaction from people about Zenda from the
      research we've done. It will save time and hassle for people, be easy and
      friendly to use, and, above all, be personalised to each customer - you only
      get the information you want, without having to sift through mountains of
      other data. We're starting small, with an embryonic service, which, if
      successful, could be developed much, much further. I'm personally very excited
      about the possibilities that Zenda could offer.”

      What you can use Zenda for now

      1. Day to day information

      Initial services on trial will include weather reports, traffic and travel
      information, current and archive news, sports results, 'what's on' guides
      including reviews and, initially in London only, details of local pubs and
      restaurants. All these services can be tailored to individual needs - and
      handled in one go.

      For example, if you're planning a trip you may want to know the best way to
      get there, whether there are any delays on the roads or railways, what the
      weather will be like, good places to eat and drink, where to visit and what to
      see and whether your bank balance can cope. Just one call to Zenda will give
      you all the information you need.


      The first stage of Zenda will be on trial for an initial six months. Up to
      5,000 people are being recruited on to the trial at ten NatWest branches,
      starting with the Bentall Centre branch in Kingston-upon-Thames, and also
      through direct mail to NatWest customers and via Personal Banking Managers.
      Anyone interested in finding out more about Zenda, or registering for a
      possible expansion of the trial in 1999, can call 0800 881 771 between 8 am
      and 8 pm Monday to Friday and 9 am to 6 pm on Saturdays.

      The initial trial will cost £5.00 per month including VAT.


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