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Google Gmail offers free text (SMS) to Smart, Globe and Sun subscribers

By on Jul 23, 2011 in Asia, Cellphone, Internet, Technology, World Comments

Manila, PhilippinesGoogle is now offering free text (SMS) to all Smart, Globe and Sun subscribers in the country, using their Gmail accounts anywhere in the world.

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As noted at Philippine Information Agency (PIA) official website on Saturday, July 23, 2011, Google announced on Friday its free text messaging (SMS) service to all Smart, Globe and Sun subscribers.

Dubbed as “Gmail-to-SMS” service, Filipino Gmail users, particularly those working abroad (OFW), can now send free SMS to their friends and relatives here in the Philippines.

“We are very excited to be launching SMS capabilities in Gmail Chat today,” Google Southeast Asia Communications and Public Affairs Head Myriam Boublil was quoted on the report.

SMS in Gmail Chat will bring a new level of flexibility and mobility to Gmail users in the Philippines.” Boublil added, noting that the country is the SMS capital in the world, with 70 million mobile subscribers.

According to PIA, Filipinos only need a Gmail account, Google’s free email service, and is as user-friendly as Yahoo mail which is more familiar in the Philippines.

To send free SMS to Smart, Globe and Sun subscribers, Gmail users should go to the new SMS Box at the lower left hand corner of their Gmail page, input the recipient’s mobile phone number (ex: +639*********) and then press “Enter”.

Afterwards, a dialog box will appear asking for the recipient’s name and after hitting “Enter”, a message window will appear on the lower part, where users can input their messages and then press “Enter” to send the message, which is notably as fast as regular texting using cellphones.

Initially, there are 50 free SMS via Gmail available but reduces as it is being used, but can be increased by five, up to a maximum of 50; if receipts reply using their cellphones, which has the usual charge rate.

“In other words, reply SMS/text is NOT free. That’s how local carriers make money out of this scheme and that’s why they have accepted it,” the report explained.

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