If things go as planned for Nimbuzz, it will soon be on the road to offering net telephony in the country, according to a report in The Hindu Business Line. The popular instant messaging service provider is currently interested in acquiring the unified license. In his statement to Business Line, Vikas Saxena, CEO, Nimbuzz, said, “We are interested in unified licence. We have to see the details before taking a final decision. This is a core part of what are doing in other parts of the world already.”
The proposed unified license regime allows a company to provide Internet services upon payment of an entry fee of Rs 15 crore. The existing system, however, allows net telephony in the country only for PC-to-PC calls.
Looking to offer net telephony in India
Interestingly, the company plans to go beyond instant messaging and cover areas like gaming and virtual goods, the report adds. Reportedly, Nimbuzz has launched Nimbuckz in partnership with other telcos. The service allows users to buy virtual goods such as avatars, emoticons, virtual gifts and chat-based games.
The report further adds that the platform is seeing over 500,000 transactions a month already, with users paying through their mobile operator. Saxena was further quoted as saying, “Credit card is a major hurdle, therefore we collect the fee on operator billing on a revenue share basis with telcos,” said Saxena.
Around mid-March this year, Nimbuzz had announced that it had breached the 150 million user mark in over 200 countries worldwide. The company revealed that more than 60 percent of the 150 million strong user base lies in Asia.
An elated Nimbuzz released these figures, announcing a 100 percent year-over-year growth of the app. The messaging platform hit 50 million in August 2011 and 100 million in 2012, thereby doubling the size of its user base every year. Nimbuzz’s presence is the strongest in Asia, with India and Saudi Arabia being the two countries with the highest number of Nimbuzz users.