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Mobile IoT Authors: Sam Ganga, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Kevin Benedict

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Kirusa Ties Airtel, Tigo & Vodafone Subscribers Into a Seamless Voice SMS Experience

Launch of Exchange Service Between Carriers in Ghana, a First in Africa, Sees Usage Go Up

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ and ACCRA, GHANA -- (Marketwire) -- 11/28/12 -- After successful launch of the Exchange service that enabled users across different carriers to exchange Voice SMS messages with ease, Kirusa announced that the service has substantially added to the experience of millions of telecom consumers in Ghana, leading to a threefold increase in the retrieval rate of off-net Voice SMS messages. The total number of Voice SMS messages has continued to increase every month since launch of the Exchange Service, further illustrating the value of providing a seamless service to users.

Introduction of the Exchange service provides seamless interoperability of Voice SMS across Airtel, Tigo, and Vodafone users in Ghana without a fragmented user experience between on-net and off-net messages.

Kirusa is the world's leading developer of Mobile Social Media and Value-Added Services. Kirusa's platforms are deployed with over 30 mobile carriers across four continents, and process more than 1 billion calls every month.

Based on the technical specification developed by the GSM Association, the worldwide trade association for the mobile phone industry, Kirusa's Exchange service enabled the three mobile operators to adopt an interoperable service for Voice SMS, just as they have an interoperable SMS service.

Kirusa's Exchange is a hosted cloud service. "The mobile subscribers of Airtel, Tigo & Vodafone are observing a rich and integrated Voice SMS experience regardless of the carrier of the sender or recipient of a Voice SMS. Kirusa's Exchange service facilitates the first retrieval of all Voice SMSes for free, even if the sender belongs to any of the other two carriers, by dialing a single short code, *0*," informed Inderpal Singh Mumick, CEO, Kirusa. All other features of Voice SMS are available for users, regardless of the source or destination of the message.

In absence of the Exchange Service, off-net recipients were charged for the first retrieval of Voice SMS -- they had to dial a 10 digit off-net number for retrievals, had to manage multiple mailboxes, and did not get an option to forward Voice SMS messages. This fragmented experience of Voice SMS lead to confusions among users, and lowered adoption and retrieval rates.

Mrinal Roy, Chief Operating Officer of Airtel Ghana, said, "Today customers are increasingly looking at carriers for adding to their convenience. This service comes as a high value-add and we are happy customers have responded well. The increased retrieval rates give us a reason to believe that our subscribers are satisfied with the service."

Tigo Ghana customers too have appreciated this new service. "What makes the exchange service special is that it enables easy retrievals of Voice SMS messages by users, which encourages them to use Voice SMS more often," said Adil El Youssefi, General Manager of Tigo Ghana.

Tara Squire, Head of Consumer Marketing at Vodafone Ghana agrees. Mr Squire said, "Vodafone's value of customer obsession begins with creating the best mobile experience for our customers. The Exchange Service speaks to the needs of our customers by being convenient and easy to use; the service is innovative and gives a great customer experience on our network."

About Kirusa
Kirusa is one of the leading global developers of Mobile Social Media and Value Added Services enabling mobile subscribers to reach out to their family and friends. Kirusa's solutions include the hugely successful Kirusa Voice SMS service, the world's most advanced Voice SMS solution, used by over 30 carriers in four continents. Kirusa has integrated its Voice SMS platforms deployed at carriers around the world into an Exchange Service to provide interoperability, and with its Vobolo platform in the cloud to provide social media services. Kirusa is pioneering a suite of social media applications that facilitate mobile subscribers to interact with each other, get infotainment, follow their favorite celebrities, and participate in TV polls and brand campaigns using voice. Kirusa provides an open platform with APIs to enable third parties to offer mobile applications. Used by over seventy million mobile subscribers every month, Kirusa solutions are built on its patented and patent pending technology and its highly reliable and scalable open multimodal platform, and process over one billion calls a month. Kirusa has been recognized as one of top 100 technology companies by Silicon India, and one of top 25 emerging technology companies by Smart Techie magazine. Headquartered in New Jersey and led by an experienced team of wireless telecom executives and technologists, Kirusa has offices in three continents. 'Kirusa Voice SMS,' is a trademark of Kirusa, Inc. For more information visit: www.kirusa.com.

About Airtel Ghana
Airtel is driven by the vision of providing affordable and innovative mobile services to all. Airtel has African operations in: Burkina Faso, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. Airtel International is a Bharti Airtel company. For more information, please visit www.airtel.com

About Tigo Ghana
Tigo Ghana is a fully owned subsidiary of Millicom International Cellular S.A, a global telecommunications group with mobile telephony operations in 13 countries in Latin America and Africa. Millicom also operates various combinations of fixed telephony, cable and broadband businesses in six countries in Latin America and online and e-commerce services in a number of countries in Latin America and Africa. Millicom telecommunication services are offered under the Tigo brand. The Group's mobile operations have a combined population under license of approximately 273 million people. Millicom's shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX, Stockholm under the symbol MIC. For more information, visit www.millicom.com

About Vodafone Ghana
Vodafone in Ghana is an operating company of Vodafone Group Plc., world's leading mobile telecommunications company, with a significant presence in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the United States. Vodafone is the only total communications solutions provider -- mobile, fixed lines, internet, voice and data -- and is currently unmatched in providing fixed line and internet services -- the leader and the first choice for Ghanaians. Vodafone is the third ranked operator in mobile with a huge potential to take over the market. Vodafone's goal is to be the communications leader in an increasingly connected world. It aims to provide the kind of innovative and responsive service for which the Vodafone Group is recognized worldwide. For more information visit: www.vodafone.com.gh

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