India: Google launches Google SMS

Google moves further into the mobile/cellphone space – not community per se but yellow pages, movie showtimes, and so on:

Google has launched beta version of a new service called Google SMS for mobile users in India. With Google SMS mobile messaging service, users can get business listings, movie showtimes and more by sending a text message to the shortcode 54664 from their mobile phones.

The new service is currently available on the Airtel, Aircel, BPL, BSNL and Reliance networks, and has relevant local data for mobile users in Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai.

According to Google, users of Google SMS service would have to pay a premium charge varying from Re 0.80 to Rs 3 per SMS to their telecom operator for sending short messages to the shortcode 54664. However, the incoming messages from Google would be free.

“There’s no denying the importance of text messaging in India, and the launch of Google SMS is a natural next step for our mobile strategy,” Vinay Goel, head of products, Google India, has said. “Millions of new mobile users are being added every month, and Google SMS will provide them with a quick and easy way to get the information they need when and where they need it.”

From alootechie. Whatever happened to Google purchasing a MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) licence in the UK? GooglePhone? I think it’s coming – just not yet?

EDIT: ok ok I get the picture. Page 60 today of Australian Financial Review has a whole article lifted from The New York Times about GPhone and Google Mobile. I’m not deleting this post tho! *grouches* its the blogoconsciousness at work. 🙂

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