Today morning I woke up to this wonderful news at twitter's blog - Hello Bharti Airtel. I was quite excited about it as we now have a (cheap) way of sending twitter messages using just a base mobile phone in India. But at the same time I was wondering what is so 'exclusive' about it. Twitter being open with it's api, it should have been trivial for anyone to create such a service.
I think the the problem is that in India any SMS to a short code is termed a 'Value Added Service' and gets charged Rs 3/-. Moreover it is not very easy to get such a short code to build your application easily. I think that creates a huge barrier for others and makes it easy for the carriers to announce such a service.
Incidentally I had been thinking about how to provide a similar feature in India and happened to stumble upon smsgupshup's platform. I got a demo account yesterday and today in couple of hours created this SMSTweet service which allows you to update your tweets over SMS.
How does it work? Well it's just a two step simple procedure.
- You send "tweet register
" to 09220092200. If you have provided a correct username/password and the twitter servers are not too busy, you account will be registered with this service. Note that both username and password are case sensitive.
- Thereafter just send SMS "tweet
" to 09220092200 and the message will be tweeted on your behalf.
As you can see that the SMS'es are being sent at a long mobile code, you will be charged your regular Re 1/- for the SMS'es.
A small note of disclaimer before you use this service. Please note that this service is just whipped up in an hour, so usability may be a little shaky. Also this service is just forwarding user messages and hence cannot be held responsible for the messages being sent.
(Picture credit : www.watblog.com)