Telkom’s mobile arm, 8ta, has reached an agreement with Google to allow its customers to access the US company’s search service, its Gmail e-mail software and social networking website Google+ for free from mobile devices.
The service, called “Free Zone powered by Google”, supports feature phones as well as smartphones. It is not available for tablet or laptop computers.
“It’s now possible to search the Web or browse e-mail, even with a zero balance,” says 8ta senior managing executive Amith Maharaj.
The service supports only text-based e-mail. Users wanting to download e-mail attachments will be redirected to a page where they can purchase data.
Support for Google+ includes the ability to upload and share text or images as well as browse Google+ streams.
Search allows users to visit the first page of websites for free. If they want to browse further, they will again be redirected to a page where they can purchase data.
8ta customers can use the service by pointing their mobile phone’s browser to 8ta.com/freezone. The service is available immediately to all 8ta contract and prepaid subscribers, and a trial of the service will run until the end of May 2013. — (c) 2012 NewsCentral Media