New Econet service powered by eTXT. SMS to Email, Chat and Facebook

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Econet eTXTToday, an email tip pointed us to a new product to be launched soon by Econet Wireless Zimbabwe. We’re not sure what the product will be named but it can be found right now on www.etxt.co.zw and it’s already active. The service allows you to use SMS to communicate seamlessly with Email, Instant Messaging (Gtalk, Yahoo Messenger, MSN Messenger, Facebook Chat) and social media networks like Facebook. It’s powered by a ForgetMeNot Africa application called eTXT.

We tried the service (the Gtalk and the Email) and to say we are impressed at how this works so effortlessly would be an understatement. It just works! There’s no complicated stuff or any cryptic configurations needed. You just enable the service on your number and you’re done.

When your number is enabled for eTXT, you get an email address in the format of your Econet number @etxt.co.zw (e.g. [email protected] for example) which you use for communication with the internet services. To chat with a Gtalk address for example, you can just ask the person you want to chat with to add your eTXT address to their Chat friends, you get an SMS that asks you if you want to chat with them, you reply ‘YES’ and you’re done. Their chats come to you as SMSs and your SMSs go to them as chats.

Email is the same, you give your contact your email address and they can start sending you mail right away. And the beauty of it is that you get to choose if you want to receive email from someone. It doesn’t just start flooding you with SMS emails you do not want. A winner for spam.

This has the potential to go really big. We’re not sure where this leaves those Econet Mail phone number addresses Econet is still pushing but our hope is they’ll just kill the project altogether and focus on eTXT. It’s THAT good. Using it you can’t help imagining the possibilities for the millions of subscribers without access to the Internet.

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Try it for yourself and let us know in the comments. Again, we have no idea when this will launch officially but we can confirm it’s working superbly as we write this. We’ve written to Econet for more information.

Here’s a ForgetMeNot Africa video that explains clearly how eTXT works:

As far as we can tell from this ForgetMeNot Africa page, eTXT was first launched on the Econet Telecom Lesotho network back in September 2009.

According to the ForgetMeNot Africa website, the company is 51% owned by Lon Zim, and 49% by ForgetMeNot Software.

 



24 Comments

  1. wiz says:

    and how much does it cost the user to text u a chat, say u are on gtalk

    1. Anonymous says:

      When I used the service i wasn’t charged for the chat SMSs to GTalk and the SMS email to Gmail but I guess that’s because the service is not launched yet. In short we have no idea what it’l cost and haven’t heard back from Econet.

      1. Tarisai says:

        It says here that etxt emails are charged at 6 cents and etxt chats are charged at 2 cents: http://etxt.co.zw/Main/FAQ.aspx

  2. Tobias Nhambure says:

    Not sure if SMSs will be charged but you will find that if you are going to be using data, it may be cheaper than using sms. I stay connected all day on GTalk and it costs me about 20cents to stay online all day. Sending and receiving chats is also negligible and I had all my friends on GTalk using Fring, Nimbuzz and . We dont send each other sms but connect on chat as this is cheaper. If econet wants this to be successful they better slash their sms tarrifs

    1. Anonymous says:

      eTXT is ideal for subscribers that don’t have internet at all on their handsets. It’s basic SMS so even the most ancient mobile phone will chat and email.

    2. Owen says:

      please tell me more on how you do this…staying all day for just 20c. What do i need to get to this life saver? Please give me more detail sothat i can join the new information age a s a person almost into my 40s

      1. Tobias Nhambure says:

        Depends on the phone that you use and if it is capable of running chat software. I am using an HTC Legend and it comes installed with GTalk. You can search on Google for applications that relate to your phone. For example if you are using a Windows Phone, search for Palringo or Fring and install on your phone. If you are using a Symbian Phone, search for Fring or eBuddy. I am not sure about Nimbuzz on Symbian. Good luck.

      2. Niggasmurf says:

        just go to this address http://www.ebuddy.com for e buddy, or http://www.nimbuzz.com for nimbuzz and follow the instruction that follow

  3. Tobias Nhambure says:

    Not sure if SMSs will be charged but you will find that if you are going to be using data, it may be cheaper than using sms. I stay connected all day on GTalk and it costs me about 20cents to stay online all day. Sending and receiving chats is also negligible and I had all my friends on GTalk using Fring, Nimbuzz and . We dont send each other sms but connect on chat as this is cheaper. If econet wants this to be successful they better slash their sms tarrifs

  4. Jaytee says:

    The platform is innovative to say the very least..However there are a number of things econet developers need to work on-especially when it comes to facebook:
    1)They need to find a way to eliminate the many(and different) numbers they allocate for your facebook contacts.Imagine if you have 200 frineds!
    2)The only notifications we are currently receiving are those directly connected with our walls.Friend Requests etc are currently not catered for

  5. Wburwa says:

    just tried the service for an hour+. It works ok. was able to forward my mails to etxt.co.zw domain. Within minutes was receiving all my email stream as sms on my mobile. I was annoyed by have to constantly reply with words MORE 1 to see the next page. It looks like the emails are being delivered in bits and pieces of 160 characters. Again I am worried about forwarding emails from my gmail to a local domain where privacy could be compromised. Guys how safe are we there? Most of us the early birds could be so excited and start re-directing our emails to this etxt domain and find ourselves now having to answer a lot of questions somewhere.

  6. ic0n1c says:

    It’s a good service i might say, though today i was bn charged for the SMSs. And yeah the facebook number allocation thing is very confusing they need to sort it out and make more smarter than having many numbers allocated for friends…

  7. Skupahigh says:

    This is a great service i totally dig wat econet is tryn to do here, i mean this could change the way we communicate bt a couple of things need to be addressed though the platform is not yet as seamless as is said above, i have noticed that some chats from my fb account or gtalk are not sent to mi phone and i only noticed this wen i used my nimbuzz, and also security as someone pointed out above yesterday i received a txt telling me i had changed my fb password and i had to reauthorise the app..i checked and this was not true but i got me wondering if these guys cld get all this info can we trust them with all our info??Is etxt all that secure?…So besides that i think its pretty much an awesome app, but there are still some glitches to be smoothed out.

  8. Anonymous says:

    nice! yet another econet service hosted outside of zim!

    1. Anonymous says:

      ahhh..hold the phone! what do the following sites all have in common??

      http://www.etxt.co.zw/en/default.aspx
      http://www.safaricom.net/en/default.aspx
      http://www.dasuba.com/en/default.aspx

      well, they are all hosted on the same server… and are being run and managed by the same 3rd party genius!

      seems like someone with a very smart idea (forgetmenotafrica) are taking social networking and african mobile service providers by storm. its very possible, that other service mobile providers like telecel and netone could be part of this gig too. just from seeing the above websites, this is clearly not limited to only econet in zimbabwe!

  9. Tafmak3000 says:

    etxt is 51% owned by LonZim 51% of which will soon be owned by an indigenous Zimbabwean near you. Here is a new sensation that Zimbabweans should be proud of being part of and soon own.

  10. subutex detox says:

    First of all, I would like to appreciate the effort that you have put in making such an informative blog. I enjoyed this post of yours and I must say that every time I come back to your blog, I always have something new and informative to read. Thanks for keeping me updated.

  11. Nyarie says:

    I think econet is always coming up with new tech.. we really enjoy using all the new way of communicating it is bringing up! Its our pride to have econet around us. wherever we go it is available.. we cherish your service and please keep on giving us such a good service..You are always reachable when it comes to our enquiries.. you never give up! Please keep us going as you also go!

  12. Brian Mpofu says:

    frand knw dat the future belong to those who go for it………………..

  13. bee.blessing says:

    econet ma1

  14. Tend Ka says:

    l was using but on Monday it was failing to send replies to my chats, email and face book can some one tell me wats going on

  15. Tonderasawaka says:

    loving it

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