Smart offers international voice text in Hongkong via 1528 SMART

May. 17, 2007

MANILA — Smart Communications, Inc. (SMART) is now offering a service that will keep Pinoys in Hong Kong and their families in the Philippines connected in a much more personal way without going beyond the budget.

SMART, in partnership with PLDT (HK) Ltd through its 1528 Smart service, has expanded its International Voice Text to include Hong Kong. 1528 Smart is the prepaid GSM mobile phone service offered in Hong Kong designed and packaged to cater to the Filipino community in collaboration with Hong Kong CSL Ltd and PLDT (HK) Ltd.

This innovative service from Smart Communications, Inc. (SMART) and mobile roaming solutions leader Roamware Inc. allows SMART subscribers to send a 30-second voice clip via SMS to a relative or friend in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and now, Hong Kong.

As part of the PLDT Group, SMART has the technology and the resources to make mobile communications truly work for the Global Pinoy. International Voice Text addresses the need to make the communication experience personal at the cost and speed of a text message, said Jane Basas, SMART Senior Manager for International Services.

There are more than 10 million Filipino migrant workers globally, with some 120,000 based in Hong Kong. Currently, 1528 Smart has 46 percent market share or approximately 55,000 subscribers.

Victor Genuino, General Manager of PLDT Hong Kong, said that like most Global Pinoys, those working in Hong Kong are constantly on the lookout for innovative and efficient means to communicate back home.

With the launch of International Voice Text, our fellow OFWs can now take pleasure in sending more personalized messages to their loved ones back home without the worries of incurring new additional communication expenses. International Voice Text is a cost-effective way to make their presence still very much felt because they are able to send voice messages at only $HK1 per message, he said.

Starting May 20, 2007, all 1528 SMART subscribers can send an international voice text from Hong Kong to the Philippines by dialing *5163 plus the Philippine mobile number (e.g. *51639181234567). To retrieve a voice text from the Philippines, the 1528 SMART subscriber in Hong Kong simply dials #51. Local airtime charges apply for retrieval of only $HK1 per message.

Introduced last February, Smart Pinoys International Voice Text was initially available to all SMART prepaid and postpaid subscribers who wanted to send a voice text to relatives and friends in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

To send an international voice text to Hong Kong, SMART subscribers simply dial *8990 then the recipients 8-digit mobile number (e.g. *899092222222). The subscriber will then be prompted to record a 30-second message. When the subscriber ends the call, the recipient overseas automatically gets a text message that he or she has been sent an international voice text. When the recipient listens to the international voice text, the subscriber or sender is automatically alerted via SMS that the message has been retrieved.

SMART International Voice Text allows the recipient to listen to the message not just once, but several times. Retrieval of voice messages cost P2.50 on the first try and P1 per retrieval thereafter. The sender receives a confirmation SMS on the retrieval only on the first attempt. The confirmation SMS is free of charge.

SMART Pinoy International Voice Text is available to all SMART prepaid and postpaid non-roaming subscribers. @

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