Microsoft picks up minority stake in Affle; inks pact for SMS2.0 media platform

Microsoft picks up minority stake in Affle; inks pact for SMS2.0 media platform

Author | Anjali Soni | Saturday, Feb 14,2009 7:09 AM

Microsoft picks up minority stake in Affle; inks pact for SMS2.0 media platform

UK-based mobile media company Affle has announced a global strategic relationship with Microsoft to strengthen its mobile media business worldwide. As part of this tie-up, Affle’s SMS2.0 media platform will now help boost the usage of Windows Live services and MSN content on mobile phones.

Talking about Microsoft’s investment in Affle, the latter’s CEO, Anuj Khanna, said, “Microsoft has become a minority shareholder in Affle. And in this economic recession, getting a global player on board is a big thing. I believe this relationship is expected to add significant value to both the companies.” Affle will now be able to leverage Microsoft’s expertise in the world of mobile media.

The launch of SMS2.0 on Windows Mobile as well as all the additional integrated features of Microsoft services on SMS2.0 is expected in the third quarter this year.

Commenting on the Indian market, Khanna said, “I truly believe that the Affle and Microsoft relationship will translate into a richer consumer experience and wider distribution as well as significant revenues for both companies, especially in India.”

Talking about the service being provided to the end user by Microsoft, Khanna said, “SMS2.0 will be able to provide MSN content on the SMS2.0 interface. It will also deliver a unique integration of MSN IM, Hotmail Services on SMS2.0 as the single point of access and service or content discovery for the users. The users would also have the option to use these incremental features and functions over and above the current core features of SMS2.0.”

An official communiqué from Affle claimed that in the Indian market, the success of SMS2.0 was quite impressive as it had already become the largest mobile media in India, delivering over 120 million monthly targeted impressions.

SMS2.0 is an upgrade of the SMS or text messaging application on the mobile phone and resides as the default messaging application on the handset. It offers users personalisation and instant messaging type features on SMS. This includes personalisation features like colours, emoticons and signature as part of the messaging experience.

Talking about the target audience, Khanna said, “We are looking at a mass appeal in terms of users. In fact, the best part about this service would be that now, consumers will have access of this application on their mobiles along with their PC.”

Also read

Affle signs up Idea and Spice as mobile operators for SMS 2.0

Affle’s SMS2.0 becomes the largest mobile media in India

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