Times Internet Limited* (Indiatimes) has updated its Active Deals platform, which is essentially its mobile based discount couponing service. Although, there is a website featuring deals, users need to register their mobile numbers to which discount coupons are sent via SMS. Indiatimes has updated the Active Deals WAP site to feature more cities, bringing the total number of cities to 25, in addition to overhauling the interface. Interestingly, one does not need to register to browse and send deals on the WAP site. It has also extended presence on social networks like Twitter and Facebook, to update users with new deals info.

Previously the cities where deals were available included Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Faridabad, Gurgaon, Kolkata, Mumbai, Noida & Ghaziabad and Pune. The list has now been expanded to include tier 2 and tier 3 cities like Amritsar, Bijnor, Ambala, Bulandshahr, Guntur and others. However, in these cities, deals are just restricted to online offers from Indiatimes, Ferns & Petals, among others. Surprisingly, even Bahrain featured in the list with just online deals.

A new ‘Books’ category has also been added that features deals from local book shops. Among other changes, 4 new languages- Tamil. Telugu, Bangla and Kannada have been added to the Active Deals IVR portal 58888188.

Not Working For Us

We tried requesting for deal coupons thrice through the WAP and web site, but did not receive them. Indiatimes should check if there is a problem with their servers and fix it. We still feel that Active Deals is not utilizing the power of the mobile internet by relying only on SMS as a coupon delivery medium. Why not launch an app to store deal coupons the moment one makes a request?

Also as we suggested earlier, GPS or A-GPS can be used to locate the user and automatically offer deals instead of asking for location. For example, a user staying in South Delhi might like deal offers in his area. And why not offer actual city specific deals through local merchants in newly covered cities instead of just online deals?

Disclosure: Indiatimes is an advertiser with MediaNama

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