Hike Messaging App Launches Globally To Change The Game With Videos, Photos & Emoticons

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Hike Messaging App has gone global and giving away two iPhone 5’s to lucky users. The  iPhone, Android and Windows Phone free person to person message app with S,D,R notifications, hilarious emoticons with allowance to create groups and share photos can be used anywhere in the world.

Hike is backed by Kavin Bharti Mittal, running Bharti SoftBank (BSB) and son of Bharti group chief Sunil Bharti Mittal. Bharti Group owns Bharti Airtel, the fourth largest telecom network in the world.

Hike is a person to person messaging app and mobile portal which Yahoo Japan is interested in working with. Here is what the guys told us; it is no secret Whatsapp, Black Berry Messenger, Kik, ChatON,GroupMe, Facebook Messenger are big but Hike is just a game changer.

TechZulu caught up with the founders and this is what they told us.

What is Hike?

Hike is a free messaging application. It is one of the most gorgeous and well thought out applications on the market with its clean and minimalistic user interface. With hike, users message friends for free globally and also share rich media such as photos and videos.

When did you launch?

Hike is already available in 14 countries and we launched in 5 additional countries on December 5th, we just went live globally.

Who are its founders?

Hike is a BSB product. BSB is a start-up funded by Bharti SoftBank led by Kavin Bharti Mittal.

What inspired you to start it? How does it work and what problem are you solving?

Most of the messaging users have many friends across 5+ apps that they chat to. Its become extremely tedious to manage friends across all these different services.  hike is our attempt at making messaging easy and simple again. With hike, you can message friends for free anytime, anywhere. Hike to hike is free globally and better yet, only in India you can message friends who aren’t on hike for free as well with the hike to SMS. In a nutshell, hike combines the real-time and free nature of instant messaging with the openness and ubiquity of SMS.

Take us through your features?

  • Beautiful Messaging: With a clean, very intuitive look hike brings the emotions back to messaging.
  • Emoticons – We’ve also built-in some beautiful and fun custom emoticons that’ll let you express yourself like never before.
  • Group Chat: Users can invite their friends into a group chat and converse.
  • Photos, Videos: They can also send photos, videos, audio files and also share their location with their friends.

The app is at its most basic at this point and you’ll be seeing us release a whole load of new features very fast, very soon.

How any users so far?

Too soon to comment. However, we’ve seen some tremendous traction in terms of demand and growth in the last couple of weeks since we went live.

What is your business model?

We’re focused on building a healthy and happy userbase at the moment. We have 4-5 ideas on how to monetize this but that will come later. One thing we’re sure of is that we’ll never monetize using ads. We believe they just deteriorate the user experience and hardly provide any real ROI to advertisers too

Competition?

Several, most close are WhatsApp, Line, Kik.

How unique are you from the competition?

So far we are on par with most of the features our competitors have. Only in India we offer the ability to message friends not on hike via Free hike SMS. One more thing that makes us stand out is our design and the way we approach building hike. hike is absolutely gorgeous from the get go.

Challenges?

Competitive space so one has to move really fast but we are not worried.

What are your future plans?

With so many services/apps allowing consumers these days to do so many different things, we want hike to be a hub that brings all this together to make communiation simple and personal again.

Sam Wakoba

Sam Wakoba travels around the world's technology hubs and events writing about startups, VC’ s and ventures. Spends nights reviewing trending gadgets, ICT initiatives, and disrupting technology.

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