The instant messaging app, Hike has recently launched Total, a product that will allow users to access essential services like messaging, news and recharge among the group and relatives without any active data connection. Hike Total is a version of Android preloaded on certain smartphones that will be accessible to users for starting price of Re. 1, and Moreover, Kavin Bharti Mittal, Founder, and CEO of Hike mentioned that the company’s goal is to bring more Indians online with Total. The company is using a proprietary USSD-based technology to enable data transfer without an Internet connection. Hike Total will be available from March 1 on selected devices like Intex Aqua Lions N1, Aqua Lions T1, and Aqua Lions T1-Lite as well as Karbonn A40 Indian across Airtel, Aircel and BSNL networks. Hike Total users will also get a reasonable amount of money, it can go up to Rs. 200 to spend on any of the Total services when they buy one of the selected devices. Those users who are interested in getting early access to the feature need to sign up on the dedicated Hike Total website.
Chief executive officer of Hike also stated that “We have worked closely with telcos on special data packs for these phones starting as low as Re. 1 to give people a taste of what it feels like. This is really powerful. We have taken the 15-20 step process of someone coming online and made it into only a few steps. Buy a phone, turn it on and you are good to go. Everything, all the essential services, all work out of the box even without data. Our goal is to bring India online and online means data so we’ve also made it extremely simple to buy data packs right contextually inside the OS itself. Hike Total has four key elements that make the end-to-end experience extremely seamless. Users only need to provide a single login via a phone number to access all Total services, such as messaging, news, horoscope, buying recharge, sending or receiving money in Hike wallet, cricket scores and rail information, which take between 100kb to 1MB data.”
All of the services provided on Total can be accessed even without data via proprietary technology. Developed in-house, the proprietary technology is based on the USSD protocol does the heavy lifting of encrypting, compressing and transmitting data. Hike Total users will also be able to purchase sachet data packs starting at Re. 1.