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Are Pinoys Ready for Mobile Instant Messaging?

While Pinoys are leading in local text traffic, mobile instant messaging (IM) is taking off in other parts of the world. This is not SMS or MMS, but messaging where you can show and set presence (online/offline/available/busy status).

In other countries and markets, this is taking off. Plus factors are: using the same mobile IM system on the phone and on the PC, high Internet penetration, and high end phones. Mobile IM needs custom programs on the phone (such as Series 60, Symbian OS, or J2ME). Some IM systems can use the Open Mobile Alliance’s Wireless Village standard built into some phones (such as the “My Friends” in Sony Ericsson phones).

Chikka has the mindshare when it comes to “mobile instant messaging. The popular IM clients in the Philippines may build their own phone clients in the future. Until then, mobile IM vendors have a market, selling to telcos and to retail users. They need to interoperate with the popular desktop IMs – Google Talk federation makes it easy.

Does mobile IM have a chance in the Pinoy mobile market?

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  • i brought 2 phones over from the states to sell it here

    Samsung E635 has both AOL Instant messenger (AIM) and Yahoo! Messenger and the other, Motorola Razr, has AIM.

  • If this allows for mobile group chatting, then there is a future for this in the Philippines.

    If just one-on-one chatting, then there is little to differentiate it from normal texting.

  • I omitted some stuff:
    1. banksxs: I forgot to mention phones with builtin IM with existing IM networks. I wonder if the feature is carrier-dependent.

    2. We also got this comment in our feedback email:

    Suncellular has been testing theirs in the past 2 to 3mos…ang galing…a person can subscribe for 1 week in the amount of 100pesos and 300pesos for one month. People can log in to their favorite IM accts like yahoo, msn, aol and ICQ. walang google. And anybody can log in simultaneously (sabay sabay) sa mga IM accounts. I tried their free trial for a day…ang galing…medyo talo ka nga lang sa pagreply from ur mobile phone…walang tatalo sa keyboard.

  • a few weeks back I wrote a short article about the Battle for Mobile Instant Messsaging. i did mentioned that there are three (3) popular open standards IM technologies out there. OMA WV is the favorite of the mobile world and is built into many phones. IETF XMPP is the favorite of folks like Google and the Open Source world. IETF SIP/SIMPLE is the leased common denominator of all protocols. It is the easier to support but has very little features.

    which way is the world turning to? Internet (IETF) or Mobile (OMA)? Feature full (OMA/IETF XMPP) or simple (IETF/SIP/SIMPLE)?

    maybe celcos can start by activating their OMA WV servers to allow the default clients in our Nokia and Sony Ericsson phone to work?

  • and i think T-Mobile, a US mobile carrier, charges like WAP

    based on how ong you use the IM service

  • Sun is offering IM services I think. From the looks of it though, it won’t be enticing me at the moment. http://sim.ph/web/

  • banksxs: either that, or per volume charges for mobile data/GPRS. just as if you were using a J2ME or Symbian app that uses the data network.

    raman: it’s really like that if you must use IM over SMS. thus the topic of my post… IM using dedicated programs.

  • jgotangco

    I’m actually using bluepulse for this (free 3G is bliss)

  • Cross your fingers and hope 3G is free forever!

  • Hi Migs and all,

    Guys, http://www.yehba.com pinoy made mobile IM, you can try it for free 🙂

  • Looks like you’ve changed the product.. it used to focus on Bluetooth I recall.

    Too bad I’m not using a Nokia phone.

  • Globe and fastmobile (a mobile IM company) are coming up with a mobile messenger for Globe.

  • Marco Polo


    for IM services, GPRS must be working in a way, that IP traffic is allowed. The Globe Prepaid-SIM I have, when visiting the Philippines from time to time, only allows WAP via GPRS, no IP traffic at all!

    Regarding Chikka: is somebody using Chikka Txt2Mail? (http://www.chikka.com/txt2mail/)? When someone has a mobile, which can send e-mail (for example Blackberry), one can send e-mails to the philippine recipient which he or she can receive as SMS. Unfortunately, this is not working reliably. Such kind of messages are delayed, normally up to 2 to 3 hours, sometimes also more. Only during philippine night-time (midnight to 5 o’clock A.M.), messages are sent in real-time. This obviously show that the problem is related to heavy traffic during day-time? I wonder why Chikka does not improve their server and this service. It is going like this since more than 1 year. And Chikka does not answer e-mails regarding this issue….

    Regards from Germany,

  • That’s right, prepaid services generally have limited features like web using the WAP gateway. Direct Internet access through the APN is restricted.

    About the Chikka issue: Hope someone from there is checking this post.

    Re: Yehba, I now got a Nokia – a N80 – but this is Series 60 3rd Edition so not supported yet.

  • I want to know more about yehba IM. would be so kind to give me an idea how to use this. Thanks!

  • I forgot all about YehBA. I had a N70 and I could have tried the Symbian version, but.. not anymore.

    Now I’m downloaded it on a Nokia 6070 on Globe. “Could not connect to server.”

    We wrote about another mobile IM: Globe’s IMEVRYWHR. It doesn’t seem very successful, maybe because it is only for S60 phones.

  • Redball

    Most of mid-range phones nowadays have a built-in IM applications. Our network operators should start implementing new services to us. Don’t be like US operators that dictates what to offer to their subscribers which influence phone makers so they either remove some phone features or stop release the phone.

  • Celine

    I also found an Instant Messenger which you can use your mobile phone to connect with your friend of MSN, YM, AIM, and GTalk. It seems to be an new and easy

    way of connecting with friends and relatives of local and oversea. All i need to do is just logon to http://philippines.im.friendplay.com/ and download the instant messenger then install it into your phone. And enjoy. Hope you enjoy this little software.

  • jokar

    Hi guyz,
    I have my nkiaE63, and its working perfectly with yahoo messenger. I was wondering if I could use it with chikka txt messenger. Can anybody out there have abrilliant idea??? tnx. Mabuhay mga noypi!!!