Philips, retailers, drinks firms test pan-Euro online shopping

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BRUSSELS -- Philips is teaming up with retailers and drinks companies in the U.K., Italy and Spain to test an online shopping project it hopes will become pan-European.

Homestead 2000 will start operating early next year in 5,000 homes in the U.K.. Trials in Spain and Italy will be smaller.

The trial will use both CD-i and Internet technology to distribute video catalogues from firms such as Fashion catalogue business Freeman's, and drinks maker Greenalls Cellars in the U.K..

The project is targeted specifically at women in each country, who will be able to purchase items via the Internet using a credit card.

"The project is the best and cheapest way of online shopping," claims Tony Scott, co-ordinator of the trial in the U.K.. "The CD allows sophisticated imagery that would take a long time on the Internet. This way you go online only to order goods."

Copyright December 1996, Crain Communications Inc.

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