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BET Makes Wireless Play

BET is the latest cable network to get into the wireless content business.

It said Thursday it will partner with North Carolina-based mobile content provider Motricity for new wireless service, BET Mobile.

The service will include graphics, games, alerts and networking features--though no BET video content at first.

BET says the goal is to start with ringtones and evolve to full music tracks and videos.

Even so, there will be content crossover between the cable network and the mobile service. Viewers will also be able to download ringtones and other content based on codes provided during music videos that run on the network.

The service is available now to subscribers to Cingular/AT&T Wireless, Sprint and T-Mobile. BET expects to extend the service to Verizon and Alltel customers by first-quarter 2006.

BET makes the second Viacom network in as many days to make its initial move. CBS said Wednesday it would make clips and other video content related to prime time and late-night programming available via Verizon's V Cast phones starting this month. --John Eggerton contributed to this report.