Jinny Software, a supplier of messaging and media platforms to mobile network operators, is trialling its VoiceSMS service with several Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in countries across Africa, including Kenya, Tanzania and Burkino Faso.
The company expects operator interest in its VoiceSMS service to increase during 2010 due to the minimal cost of implementation. The Jinny Media Resource Server is already used by operators to provide other services from the company such as Voicemail of Ringback Tones, and VoiceSMS is simply another application that is hosted on the application servers. Therefore, implementation of VoiceSMS requires minimal additional investment; this low CAPEX start, coupled with a similar pricing point to standard texting, means that operators can expect a fast return on investment from VoiceSMS services.
The African market is well suited for this additional and more affordable VAS, offering an alternative to voice at a reduced rate. An approach to pricing the service being considered by some group operators in Africa is to offer the same tariffs for VoiceSMS across all their African networks. In this scenario, a message sent between two different countries, e.g. Kenya and Tanzania, but within the same operator group, is charged at one rate, regardless of origin and destination, with first retrieval included in the price.
A further major advantage of VoiceSMS over text for the African market is it offers everyone, irrespective of language, alphabet, literacy level or handset, the chance to send a short personal message to the recipient. It also educates the customer base about voice-related services, still the primary and strongest revenue stream for MNOs in Africa and the rest of the world.
Aniket Deuskar, Sales Director Africa, Middle East & Asia for Jinny, said “As part of our Call Completion proposition roll-out, Jinny is looking forward to successfully completing the VoiceSMS trials currently underway and seeing these operators reap the rewards from these new voice and call-related services in terms of increased ARPU and network revenue, once commercially launched.”