As a tropical depression caused persistent rains, overflowing rivers and bridges submerged in Belize last week, the country’s leading mobile phone provider – Belize Telemedia supplied a way for people to stay connected using software from Trinidad based Teleios Systems. Belize Telemedia is using the Teleios MessageCentral Mobile Messaging Service Delivery Platform to deliver value added SMS services to their customers. One such service is the Shout Application which provided a way for people to stay connected during the storm.
The recently launched service, branded in Belize as DigiCell Shout, is provided by Belize Telemedia in partnership with Teleios as a quick and easy way for radio listeners to interact with on air personalities. Making use of a station branded short code, DigiCell customers are able to send a text message to the radio announcer. The message is immediately received on a screen, making it easier to broadcast the message on-air.
One of the Belize radio stations using this system and offering 24/7 coverage during the storm stood out as the voice of the people, allowing friends and loved ones to keep in touch. As various districts of Belize got their fair share of torrential rainfall and floods, the Western districts were hit most and are now considered disaster areas, as bridges were submerged under water and communities were cut off. Love FM continued their broadcast throughout and came up with an innovative way of using this Interactive Media Service. The station requested listeners in villages and remote areas to use SHOUT to send in updates on the status of road access, rainfall and flooding and even passing on public safety information and alerts to listeners.
The response to this service was incredible, as listeners did not have to deal with busy tones and wait for their call to be answered to be put on air. Linda Bautista, Business Development Executive at Belize Telemedia as providers of the service said they were pleased as “The stations made it sound as though the DigiCell Shout 10-10 numbers are the most efficient way to communicate alerts and updated information during this severe weather “. As text messages were received to the codes, the announcers were able to relay them instantly on air. The web based application receives interactive SMS feedback from the listening audience and displays real time message views with search capabilities as its basic feature.
The service was designed by Teleios Systems to allow radio stations to creatively enhance their programming as demonstrated by Love FM in providing an efficient way to communicate weather updates. Kevin Khelawan, Teleios Chief Operating Officer said, "We at Teleios are delighted to be able to play a role in the delivery of such a valuable service at a critical time in Belize. We want to commend the Belize media and public for such a creative use of our technology".
Teleios Systems Limited founded in 1997 is a technology company which develops and markets wireless and internet solutions for a range of customers including telecommunications, finance, manufacturing, education and government. Visit www.teleios-systems.com for more information.
Belize Telemedia Limited is the largest business, telecommunications and multimedia company operating in Belize focused on developing, engineering and deploying state-of-the-art network and technologies in providing the best in communications and multimedia services.
27 October 2008