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Eastwind Develops Beeline Salom Messenger

22 september 2017
The application will allow Beeline-Tajikistan subscribers to save money when calling and sending SMS home not only to other users of the messenger, but also to any GSM numbers.
In autumn 2016, Tajikistan had to substantially increase telecom prices: the rising exchange rate had effected a 45% growth in rates. There was no way this uptick in prices would not affect the behavior of people who called their relatives: in fact there were about 1 million citizens of Tajikistan on the territory of the Russian Federation at that moment, according to the Federal Migration Service.
Tacom, one of the leading telecom operators in the Republic, operating under Beeline brand, has launched its branded messenger to allow subscribers to keep in touch as usual. The main requirements were the ability to use the app to call and text to any GSM numbers and allocate numbers to those who are not subscribers of Beeline. Eastwind presented to the operator its Polyphone messenger, which was used as a basis for the development of Salom.
"Our product offers more communication options: even if subscribers are already roaming, they can immediately start using the app and make calls to fixed numbers in areas with no GSM coverage but with Internet access, - explains Evgeny Boykachev, product manager at Eastwind. – We have also added messaging and file exchange functions that are a must for a messenger nowadays. Thus, the operator can monetize the service by charging external traffic, and subscribers can always call home wherever they are. "
Eastwind supplies the messenger as mobile applications for iOS and Android, as well as a desktop version for Windows. We develop a unique design for each customer, including a collection of exclusive stickers. It is up to the operator to name the new messenger.

Beeline Salom has factored in the local colors of Tajikistan as well as the immediate needs of subscribers. The app includes a set of stickers in the national style, and the interface is available in Russian, English and Tajik. "We put out a contest inside the company for the best name, - says Validzhon Mavlanov, product development manager at Tacom. – Our employees had supplied many good ideas, but Salom got unanimous vote for the winner. For the people in the East, salo is not just a greeting; it symbolizes socializing and politeness. The name quickly took root."

Salom can be integrated with a GSM network, which gives more opportunities for subscribers. In addition to free communicating over the Internet inside the application, they can also call and text to any numbers at home rates.

Beeline Salom is downloadable from App Store and Google Play. When first starting up, subscribers enter their phone number and the service automatically identifies which operator the SIM card belongs to. If it is Beeline-Tajikistan, then you can immediately start using the app upon entering your authorization code sent to you by SMS. If the number belongs to another operator, the messenger will suggest you filled out an application form, photograph your passport, and apply for an allocated Beeline number. The procedure does not require subscribers to change their old SIM-cards – they can continue to use those. The assigned number will work through Salom, supporting both outgoing and incoming calls and SMS to Tajikistan.

"Now the application has almost 25,000 active users; more than half of them are new Beeline-Tajikistan subscribers who registered in Salom online, - says Andrey Simonov, head of the mobile telecoms group at Eastwind. – Every day, 300-400 people apply for assigned numbers."

Calls to GSM numbers are the most popular service with users. The economy is obvious: on average, a minute of conversation between Tajikistan and Russia is 1 somoni, while Salom subscribers with allocated numbers pay 0.5 somoni for the first minute, and all the rest of the conversation is free. Those who already have a Beeline-Tajikistan SIM card use home rates. Interestingly, the growing installations are provided by word of mouth: Tacom has not yet started an official promotion campaign for the messenger, waiting for tests to finish.
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