Wednesday, June 01, 2005

UpSnap Offers The 411

I started to use this and found it gave pretty quick info. Just send text to 27627 with a zipcode and subject and watch what happens.

What I see happening here is the speed of the response via SMS, eliminates the need to use the web for mobile search.

From Mobile startups struggle .

San Francisco-based UpSnap ,turn a user’s costly 411 directory-assistance call into a free service that is paid for by the merchant. Local merchants are so eager to get on the radar of the cell phone caller that the merchant is willing to pay a premium rate to land on the top of UpSnap’s search engine.

UpSnap is only a year old but has partnered with directory listing company LookSmart and already offers its directory search service with Cingular. The company says deals with the other carriers, including Verizon Wireless, Sprint, and T-Mobile, will follow in the next few weeks.

The company offers LookSmart’s search service via SMS, or short message service. If the user types in “Flowers 415” and then chooses the “free call connect” option, the local flower company that has paid for the top spot on the service will automatically receive the call.

UpSnap CEO Tony Philipp said that “merchants are willing to pay 10 times higher for cell phone-search access than web-search access.” At the same time, consumers in the age group of 18 to 30 are unwilling to spend the up-to-$2 expense of a 411 call over cellular.

Imagine the consequences if search engines charged $2 for every search done on a PC.

No comments: