New Delhi, September 21, 2008: In continuation with its efforts to enhance mobile experience for its customers, Bharti Airtel, India’s leading telecommunications service provider along with Affle today announced the launch of a revolutionary upgrade to SMS which allows users to trigger Search from their friendly SMS screen, thus redefining SMS forever to Short Message & Search 2.0
Traditionally SMS has been one of the popular applications on the mobile phone and one that is accessed most often by users. By ensuring that users could trigger Search from SMS, Airtel has ushered into a new era where access to Mobile Internet is not limited to those who know how to launch browsers on their phone.
The ease of using Search on Internet triggered an information access revolution on the internet. Airtel expects Search to play a similar role on the Mobile and thus its consistent efforts of making Search access easier and more user friendly for its customers.
Commenting on the launch of Search integrated SMS2.0 experience, Mr. Sanjay Gupta, Chief Marketing Officer; Bharti Airtel said, “The uptake of the SMS2.0 has been very encouraging and we are embarking to take this platform to a different level – introducing search through SMS. This new upgrade service will thus allow Airtel users to Search – Airtel Live, Internet, Local search, Jobs and Property listings, from their SMS screen.”
This integration of Search on SMS, has been conceptualized and developed by Affle through its extensive R&D efforts in Singapore & India. Mr. Anuj Khanna, CEO Affle, says, “India is a very exciting mobile market and in Airtel we have found a great partner to take our services to users. We had tremendous success with the SMS2.0 service, and with the launch of Search, we feel that the value proposition to the user is even more exciting. Our research shows that the Search behavior of users on the mobile phone is very different from the internet and hence integration of exciting local and other user relevant Search options on the easy to use SMS interface makes this experience very enticing”
This revolutionary service also opens up a huge revenue model driven around delivering contextual advertising on the search results. As part of this partnership, the task of delivering and monetization of this advertising also rests jointly with Affle & Airtel.
The Short Message & Search 2.0 (SMS2.0) application is available to users for free and to download SMS2.0, the Airtel customers simply need to send “SMS2” to 543210. There is no charge for downloading and for subsequent content delivery on this platform; the SMS charges remain unchanged and according to the existing mobile plan.
About Bharti Airtel Limited:
Bharti Airtel Limited, a group company of Bharti Enterprises, is India’s leading integrated telecom services provider with an aggregate of 75 million customers. Bharti Airtel has been rated among the best performing companies in the world in the BusinessWeek IT 100 list 2007.
Bharti Airtel is structured into three strategic business units – Mobile services, Telemedia services and Enterprise services. The mobile business provides mobile & fixed wireless services using GSM technology across 23 telecom circles. The Telemedia business provides broadband & telephone services in 94 cities and is foraying into the IPTV and DTH segments. The Enterprise business provides end-to-end telecom solutions to corporate customers and national & international long distance services to carriers. All these services are provided under the Airtel brand. Airtel’s high-speed optic fibre network currently spans over 78,540 kms covering all the major cities in the country. The company has two international landing stations in Chennai that connects two submarine cable systems – i2i to Singapore and SEA-ME-WE-4 to Europe. For more information, visit www.bhartiairtel.in
Affle is a leading a mobile media company. They offer cutting edge mobile media technologies with a value proposition for consumers and business partners. The solutions and products from Affle have been specially designed to enhance user experience and make mobile media a reality.
Affle currently operates in five countries including the UK, India, Singapore, Thailand, and Malaysia. The company is in the process of strategically expanding to other top mobile markets in the coming years.
Affle has already established strong partnerships with leading Mobile Network Operators, Original Equipment Manufacturers, Content Providers, Media Agencies, and Advertisers, across various geographies to successfully enable this business. For more information, visitwww.affle.co.uk.
For further information, please contact:
Anjali Gupta / Satyajit_Borah
+91 9818093238/ 9899392940