New Delhi: Bharti SoftBank's free mobile messaging app 'hike', which was launched globally in December 2012, has crossed 5 million subscribers. "The free mobile messaging app 'hike' from Bharti SoftBank (BSB), has crossed the 5 million active subscribers mark in just four months after its launch. This makes 'hike' one of the fastest growing free mobile apps globally," the company said in a statement.
Bharti SoftBank (BSB) is a joint venture between Bharti Enterprises and mobile communication and broadband services firm Softbank. The app, which allows users to send free SMS, even to contacts who do not have 'hike' on their handsets, provides its subscribers access anywhere across Airtel's global network. Users can also share location, photos and videos with other users. In India, 'hike' has seen a phenomenal uptake and adoption for its unique 'hike' to SMS feature that allows users to send free messages to even those friends/contacts who do not have the app on their mobile phone, it added.
Besides, it allows users to send free instant messages to friends/contacts who have 'hike' on their phones, anywhere across its global network. Users can also share location and rich media such as photos and videos. BSB has introduced an update to 'hike' called 'hike 2.0', which brings with it status updates with moods that allows users post updates about what they are up to or what they are thinking in real-time to their close friends only, it said.
Users can also carve out a 'Circle of Friends' in the app to whom the update would go out, it added. "We've been carefully listening to our users and we realised the biggest thing missing in hike was status updates. With 'hike 2.0', we are introducing status updates with moods," said BSB Product and Strategy Head Kavin Bharti Mittal. Free 'hike' SMS is proving to be extremely popular in a country like India where not everyone in a group of friends has access to a data-enabled smartphone, he added. 'hike' has subscribers across iOS, Android, Windows, and Nokia S40 platforms and the app will shortly be available on Blackberry and Nokia S60 platforms.