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RockeTalk Opens Up API; Spiritual Content With Anagha

Mobile application RockeTalk has opened up its API to allow external developers and service providers to monetize their platform, which, they claim, has 4 million users on a monthly basis. To begin with, they’ve tied up with Anagha Communications* to launch a WAP site which provides the Shia community with “Muharram on Mobile” content – religious sermons during on audio and video, including various Majlis, Marsiyas, Nohas and Juloos. Over 10,000 cards, each priced at Rs. 100, have already been distributed. The service is available at http://wap.muharram.in, and on IVR at +914030512840. There’s also an iPhone application called Shia Muharram on the Apple Appstore.

RockeTalk CEO Rajiv Kumar told MediaNama that they provision the service and prints scratch cards. For external applications, they have a standardized a revenue share of 35% (collected as pre-payment when a set of cash cards is given out), with the application partner keeping 65% of the revenues. RockeTalk will promote the service on its platform, but the partner will have to bear the cost of distribution of the scratch cards. “We’re open to all apps, but focused on apps with which help monetize our app (Rocketalk) better.” Users have to send a message the scratch card number to a short code, and which is used to validate usage. They aren’t signed up as RockeTalk users, though.

Kumar says that three or four other services are coming on board – two in the spiritual area, which will distribute voice, photo and video updates, sold as packages, and another is a band which is going to promote its songs. With the band, RockeTalk has a flat fee model, where they’re paying a specific amount for each block of users (say, 1000 users) that joins their fan page.

Anagha Communications’ CEO Sandeep Singh told MediaNama that the scratch card distribution is being done through retailers in Lucknow, Jammu and Hyderabad. Apart from RockeTalk, the service is live on Vodafone, at 5670309, UP (East), UP (West), Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Jammu & Kashmir, Gujarat and Mumbai. The service is charged at (roughly) Rs. 0.5 per minute; Singh said that they’re also in talks with other telecom operators. The telecom operator service is separate from the scratch card option being tried with RockeTalk; the festival is live for a timeframe of two months and eight days.

This development is particularly interesting in the context of off-deck billing coming into play, and surprisingly at the same time with operator operator payment. Mobile app co Mig33, earlier this year, introduced revenue share plans, looking to tie up with VAS companies.

Disclosure: Until last month, Anagha Communications was the sales house representing MediaNama.

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Written By

Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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