Mobile-worx, Alabot launch ad-supported SMS search

By , agencyfaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | January 30, 2008
The Intelligent SMS Search service will recognise search queries on SMS in everyday language

Mobile services

company Mobile-worx has announced a tie-up with Alabot, a mobile applications company, for a natural language search service on mobile, which is supported by advertising.

The Intelligent SMS Search works by recognising search queries in everyday language and then returning search results from a multitude of databases. This includes mobile content, local business directories, and travel, hotel and movie information.

The service will soon enable mobile transactions so that customers can make their bookings or purchases through the same medium. The ads will be integrated into the results and will be contextually relevant. In addition to English, the search will be available in Hindi and other Indian languages.

For example, if a user types "flights for Delhi to Bangalore in morning", the Bot, or intelligent programme, which reads the query, will return all the relevant flight timings to the user. It will prompt the user to book the ticket, and even tell him about any discounts that are available. Similarly, a user typing "want a Bryan Adams song" may receive search results of relevant songs and also a free ringtone sponsored by an advertiser.

Speaking to agencyfaqs!, Asif Ali, president, Mobile-worx, says that the service is free and no premium SMS charge will be applied (the customer will have to pay for a normal SMS, depending on his operator). "This way, there are no complex keywords to remember. The user can look for information in the language that he uses normally while writing an SMS," he says.

Ali adds, "SMS is the biggest medium in India and it is easy to discover content through it." Currently, the service is being run in a beta or testing phase, and Ali says that the company will monetise it in the next quarter.

Mobile-worx is also developing a content and social networking mobile portal, which Ali says will be launched by the end of March. The intelligent search will be integrated into the portal and will also evolve to include searching for other members on the network.

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