SOURCE: Kirusa


January 29, 2010 08:00 ET

MTN Uganda Voice SMS Experiences Significant Adoption Rate in First Three Months of Service

Impressive Adoption of New Service Within a Short Time Frame

KAMPALA, UGANDA and NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ--(Marketwire - January 29, 2010) - MTN, the leading mobile carrier in Uganda, announced that it has seen an impressive adoption of the newly launched Voice SMS service by its subscribers, and has ordered an upgrade to triple the capacity of the Voice SMS system. MTN had launched Voice SMS service across Uganda, based on pioneering Voice SMS technology from Kirusa, the world's leading vendor of Voice SMS and a leading developer of mobile value added services. MTN Uganda Voice SMS service has seen adoption by over 11% of its subscribers within three months of the launch of Voice SMS on their network.

Voice SMS allows the subscribers to send messages by voice, eliminating the need to type. It enables the subscribers to communicate faster, with greater ease, and convey emotions as compared to limitations of text messages. Use of Voice SMS by mobile subscribers is gaining global relevance for its benefits in surpassing the limitations of text messages.

Users dial * followed by the number to record and send a message. The recipient receives an SMS notification for each new Voice SMS and can listen to the messages by dialing *0* or a DirectListen number embedded in the SMS notification. Users can send messages to other MTN users, as well as to subscribers of other mobile carriers in Uganda. The service is being promoted, and awareness is being created in the subscriber base, using several methods, including USSD, SMS, MTN retail outlets, and radio.

MTN introduced tiered pricing for Voice SMS for prepaid subscribers with discounted pricing for sending Voice SMS to on-net subscribers and during off-peak hours. Postpaid subscribers pay one price for sending Voice SMS to on-net and off-net at all times. MTN's offer of free repeat listen calls for three months also added an impetus to the traffic.

Voice SMS has been performing extremely well at MTN Uganda since the date of launch. The Voice SMS adoption figure in the first month of launch was around 8% and the usage was around four Voice SMS compose calls per user, which was an excellent start. By the second month, the adoption had increased to 11%. Moving forward, MTN has been experiencing significant retention for Voice SMS service, with 75% of total users being existing users.

Commenting on the occasion, Isaac Nsereko, Chief Marketing Officer of MTN Uganda, said, "We are delighted with the success of Voice SMS service with our subscribers. The service has been receiving an overwhelming response from our subscribers since its launch as they have found it an innovative medium to communicate. The richness of the Kirusa solution and the support from the Kirusa team has been instrumental in achieving this success."

Commenting on the performance, Dr. Inderpal Singh Mumick, CEO and Founder of Kirusa, said, "We congratulate MTN Uganda on gaining great momentum in their Voice SMS offering." He further added, "The key here is to offer an easy to use service at attractive rates, and to create awareness amongst users to build up on the service strength and popularity."

About MTN Uganda

Launched in 1994, the MTN Group is a multinational telecommunications group, operating in 21 countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The MTN Group is listed on the JSE Securities Exchange in South Africa under the share code: "MTN." As at 30 June 2009, MTN recorded 103,2 million subscribers across its operations in Afghanistan, Benin, Botswana, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Republic, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Republic of Congo (Congo Brazzaville), Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia. The MTN Group is a global sponsor of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ and has exclusive mobile content rights for Africa and the Middle East. Visit and

About Kirusa

Kirusa is one of the leading global developers of Voice SMS based Mobile Value Added Services (MVAS); enabling mobile subscribers to 'reach out' to their family and friends. Kirusa's solutions include the hugely successful Kirusa Voice SMS, the world's most advanced "Voice SMS" solution that has been selected by more than thirty carriers around the world. Kirusa Voice SMS enables mobile subscribers to send messages by speaking. Kirusa has pioneered a suite of applications that facilitate mobile subscribers through voice viz. Call-n-Tweet; LoudMouth; Call Complete; Video SMS; Carry Forward; Emissary; International and Convergent Voice SMS, Voice SMS Gateway; Kirusa Exchange service and Brew and Java clients. Kirusa has launched a Consumer Corner, an online site for information and resources on Voice based MVAS for mobile subscribers. Kirusa solutions are built on Kirusa's patented and patent pending technology and its highly reliable and scalable multimodal platform. The platform enables carriers to cost effectively deploy additional revenue generating applications such as messaging, search, information, and entertainment. Kirusa's solutions are used by mobile subscribers millions of times daily. Kirusa has been recognized as one of top 100 technology companies by Silicon India for years 2007 and 2008, and one of top 25 emerging technology companies by Smart Techie magazine. Headquartered in New Jersey and led by an experienced team of wireless telecom executives and technologists, Kirusa has sales offices in three continents, with research and development facilities in New Delhi and in Bangalore, India. 'Kirusa Voice SMS,' 'DirectListen™,' 'Call-n-Tweet' and 'Speed Codes' are trademarks of Kirusa, Inc. For more information, please visit

Contact Information

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