Aircel has launched Wish- Tunes, which will allow Aircel customers to set a personalized season’s greetings tune as their dialer tune. Aircel customers can personalize their dialer tune with their names and greet their callers with current season’s greetings (eg – Apurva wishes you happy Diwali). Aircel will provide this service for other festivals as well.

How to use: To subscribe to the service, Aircel customers will have to dial 5300035 (Rs. 6/min) and select names from a ‘name catalogue’ of over 4,500+ common Indian first names. If their name is not available in the catalog, Aircel customers can also leave their name request on the IVR.  Alternatively, customers can also send in their requests by texting STW to 5300035 (Example: STW Apurva to 5300035) for Rs 10/SMS. Aircel claims that it will activate the service within 72 hours of subscribing.

Charges: Apart from the tune setting charges, Aircel will charge a monthly subscription fee of Rs 30/month to new customers. If an Aircel customer is already subscribed to its dialer tunes service, users will only have to pay the wish-tune settings chargers. Aircel has informed MediaNama that the service is provided by Aircel themselves and that there’s no other VAS provider involved, which makes sense since the company does not need to license music content here. Having said that, we find the monthly subscription fee to be on a higher side since the company does not have to share the revenue with a music content provider, which it ideally would have, in case of a dialer tunes service.

The service is available in 14 circles – Chennai, Rest of Tamil Nadu, Assam, North-East, Jammu & Kashmir, Bihar, Orissa, Himachal Pradesh, Kolkata, Gujarat, Punjab, West Bengal, Haryana and Rajasthan.

Other developments: In January 2011,  Aircel has launched ‘Dialer Tune – Song Edit’, a caller tune service which allows users to select a portion of a song they’d like to use as their caller tune. Reliance Communications had also tied up with mobile VAS provider Altruist Technologies to launch a user generated Caller Tune service on its pan-India network. The service allowed Reliance GSM and CDMA mobile customers to record any content for 30 seconds through the ‘Tune Maker‘ web or IVR interface (56694400) and set it as their caller tune.  Customers could also share their content with other users who can use it as their own caller tune.

Apart from that, we have seen more innovations in last couple of months where telecom operators have tried to introduce innovative value added services. Mobile operator, Tata Docomo, had recently partnered mobile VAS company, OnMobile, to launch a mobile app called My Call Me Tune that allows Tata DOCOMO GSM subscribers to create, customize and activate their caller tunes (CRBTs). My Call Me Tune allows users to search, preview and buy music content, namely caller ring back tones, on the go from their the app. Users can also set their current as well as future presence/status, on the fly, and set it as their call me tune for a fixed duration.