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Shorthand Mobile Launches SMS-Based Mobile Browser in India, Partners with SMS GupShup for Asia Distribution


Accessing SMS GupShup’s APIs, the Shorthand SMS Browser offers rich mobile app experiences for feature phone users who do not access data.

San Diego, CA / Mumbai, India (January 21, 2011) Today tech startup Shorthand Mobile announces the launch of the first SMS-based mobile browser with access to SMS GupShup in India. Shorthand is partnering with SMS GupShup, India’s largest social network, to distribute the mobile application. With smartphone penetration still low in India, SMS remains the only way to reach the Indian mass market. The Shorthand SMS Browser provides a highly interactive user experience, enabling feature phone users easy access to content using only their SMS / text plans.

In March of 2010, SMS GupShup launched AppShup, one of the first app stores dedicated to the promotion and distribution of SMS applications. The open developer platform allowed developers to develop SMS-based applications and services quickly and easily. “We were thrilled to see Shorthand Mobile’s interest in AppShup, and proud to partner with them to deliver both access to SMS GupShup content and distribution of their SMS-based browser. Shorthand utilized our technology in a way that will serve millions of Indians,” says SMS GupShup CTO Vishy Ramachandran.

The SMS Browser uses SMS, not GPRS data, to send and receive information in a rich, interactive, graphical interface. From one mobile application users can access SMS GupShup and other great websites without the need to memorize short-codes and complex SMS keywords. The browser offers simple, fast iPod-like menus, allowing users to seamlessly scroll-and-click to get targeted information, content and services.

“With the Shorthand SMS Browser, our goal is to provide access to SMS content and services with an intuitive, consistent look and feel” says Raj Oswal, Director-Business Development, Shorthand India. “We have made it easy to discover content and services from partner websites.” Shorthand features ways for users to discover new SMS content from the content catalog on the phone or on the web.

In addition to social networking, Shorthand offers access to news, sports, astrology, local search, ticket purchase, job search and much more.


About Shorthand India

Shorthand gives mass-market mobile users access to internet content without paying for data. Shorthand’s powerful mobile app-platform leverages SMS to offer rich, graphical and interactive access to a wide range of branded content, including, social networking, sports, information, local search, entertainment, retail, banking, ticket purchases and more. Because Shorthand utilizes SMS its addressable market is the vast majority of mobile subscribers rather than the minority of subscribers who access data for information and services. Simple iPod-like menus offer fast, intuitive and cost-effective access to popular and valuable content without the need to memorize short codes or to remember and key-in obscure keywords, empowering subscribers using the communication channels they are most familiar with (voice and text) and already pay for.

About SMS GupShup

SMS GupShup was created with the vision to create group messaging for all. The SMS GupShup platform enables the creation of large Mobile Communities and Reply-All Chat, a revolutionary product that allows people to use SMS for communication in smaller groups.

SMS GupShup extends the capabilities of p2p sms technology to social messaging including 1-to-many, many-to-many and many-to-1 communication, thereby enabling social interactions on SMS, the only medium that reaches 4 billion users worldwide. Mobile communities allow people to create large groups and broadcast messages to them using just SMS while brands and enterprises use the service to connect to their customers. Launched in April 2007, it is used by 40 million users in 4 million communities that share content on topics such as finance, entertainment, lifestyle, health, sports and technology. The unique Reply-All Chat service enables the CC like functionality of e-mail on SMS and allows multiple people to chat simultaneously in smaller groups. Carriers are using this service today to increase ARPU and offer their customers a truly mobile solution for social networking.

Founded by seasoned Silicon Valley entrepreneurs and incubated at the IIT Bombay Business Incubator, the company is funded by Charles River Ventures, Helion Ventures and Globespan Capital.

How AppShup (by SMS GupShup) works:

AppShup is simple. The system requires developers to have only a basic knowledge of any programming language, understanding of web applications and familiarity with JSON and XML. Developers can use the AppShup API Platform to create and connect their apps to other websites and blogs as well as modify their GupShup stream through the program. The GupShup Apps platform lets developers make small SMS applications and widgets that help users communicate to systems with SMS. Developers are encouraged to make simple, interactive applications which are easy to use, solve a business need, or are just fun to play.



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