Wednesday 28 September 2011

Now, Social Networking Via SMS On Vodafone.

After Tata Indicom and Airtel, it is now Vodafone's turn to enable its subscribers to access Facebook using SMS. This makes it possible to access the social networking service even if you don't own a smartphone.

Vodafone will use Myriad's flagship mobile social networking platform Xumii to deploy Myriad Updates, which is a text-based mobile social networking service. Subscribers will not be required to have a data-enabled handset to be able to access this service.

Vodafone Essar CMO, Kumar Ramanathan said, "Adoption of social networking on mobile devices across India is growing exponentially. In order to keep pace with market demands, our partnership with Myriad will enable us to quickly and seamlessly deliver social networking services on a massive scale across our entire subscriber base using SMS and USSD". Additional services including instant messaging and mobile email will also be introduced soon.

This new service makes use of USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) service, which is a protocol used by GSM to communicate with service provider s computers. Those who have had mobile phones for over a decade, may remember that USSD had been in use in the form of WAP-over-SMS to access mobile internet in phones not supporting any form of internet connectivity. Due to the limitations of the technology, the interactivity is also limited to status updates, "friend" requests and posting text on walls.

The revenue model for this feature has not been specified, although it is likely to be free like the one offered by Airtel.

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