By Duncan Mackay
British Sports Internet Writer of the Year

Samsung_tabNovember 3 - Samsung, a worldwide Olympic TOP sponsor, has signed an exclusive agreement with VisitBritain designed to help Britain maximise the benefits of London hosting the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics.

Samsung are using the link-up to promote its rival to the·Apple iPad, which will be used as a hi-tech tourism tool in the run-up to London.

The Galaxy Tab media player and mini PC, which hit the high streets next Monday (November 8) priced at around £529 ($853), is to be pre-loaded with an app which provides touchscreen tips on things to see and do across Britain.

The information includes a range of images, video and GPS-linked data suggesting tips for trips for people who have come to Britain for the Games.

The information, provided by the VisitBritain, will be pre-loaded from December.

It is expected to be put on 25 million handsets and is being billed as "The Best of Britain" app.

More than £5 million ($8 million) in value in kind is expected to result from the deal to help promote Britain in the next four years, according to VisitBritain.

Sebastian Coe, the chairman of London 2012, said: "The London 2012 Games will be a fantastic way to showcase the best this country has to offer - to the spectators, tourists, athletes and media alike.

"Now visitors will have a chance to find out the best things to do and see in Britain, making sure their experience during the London 2012 Games is the best it can be."


Coe joined a party of VIPs including Samsung's vice-president and head of worldwide sports marketing Gyehyun Kwon and VisitBritain's chief executive Sandie Dawe as the deal was announced at London's Tower Bridge.

Kwon said: "Samsung is committed to Britain and London 2012.

"Customers can look forward to consuming exclusive content from VisitBritain on the Galaxy Tab and we hope this combination of great content on a great wireless device will enrich the experience for all of us."

Dawe said: "VisitBritain believes that by sharing stunning images, video and information that shows Britain at its best we will encourage people in growing markets around the world - and particularly younger travellers - to visit.

"We hope that tourists who consult the Samsung-VisitBritain app will be inspired to explore the whole of the UK."

The link-up with Samsung comes shortly after VisitBritain found its Government funding is to be cut by 34 per cent.

The tourism body is looking to develop more and stronger partnerships with the commercial sector.

Secretary of State for Media, Culture and Sport Jeremy Hunt, said: "The Government is investing around £50 million ($81 million) in tourism marketing, and challenging industry to match that to create a £100 million ($161 million) marketing fund to capitalise on 2012 and beyond.

"This partnership between VisitBritain and Samsung is a great example of what can be achieved when the public and private sectors come together."

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