Tuesday, April 04, 2006
the Skype of SMS? - Hotxt
Hotxt has been launched in the UK to provide UK mobile users with a cheaper alternative to SMS text. Simply download a java app and you can hotxt to other hotxt users as much as you like for 1 Ukpounds per month.
The propositon is clear and the cost benefit to heavy texters is obvious. It seems positoined at the mass-market younger user but may face a few adoption barriers in that it requires your group of friends to all have a java compatible phone, and the user has to pay for the service. A service like this needs to create a critical mass to overcome the adoption and maturity curves, and I dont think that charging 4 UKP/month from the outset is perhaps the best way of doing this. IMHO - the chances of getting a circle of friends all with a compatible phone and a willingness to to pay the fee is pretty slim - it would have been better to launch for free and monetise it through a weekly paid ad or the like. I would also worry about battery life with something like this - presumably the client has to regularly poll for new messages which drains a lot of power. But hey - good luck to them! I'll be watching its del.icio.us ranking to see its popularity amongst the early adopters...
WirelessWorld Forum has discussion on this here
21/04 - see also tex2