Day before yesterday I got a text message stating Hey, join me on Hike! The only Indian messaging app! You can now hide your private chats from others.
I thought that she was playing a prank, given the fact that how I love everything Indian but it seems no, the text message was real and Hike exists. I was living in ignorance. Ignorance is bliss. After Facebook, Twitter, and Whatsapp, and Hike now. I told myself that I don’t need it but the curiosity killed the cat. In this case, I unearthed some interesting facts about the app.
Hike is a popular messaging app but I didn’t know it. The maximum users of Hike in India are under 25. Now you see why I did’t know it. It is developed by BSB. Bharti SoftBank is a joint venture between Bharti Enterprises and SoftBank. BSB is an incubator. They build teams from the ground up but also carefully invest in small fledgling teams that they see great potential in and that share their vision. At its core BSB is an agile and fast moving start up.
Bharti Enterprises is one of India’s leading business groups with interests in telecom, agri-business, financial services, retail and manufacturing. Bharti has been a pioneering force in the Indian telecom sector with many firsts and innovations to its credit. Bharti Airtel Limited, the group’s flagship company is a leading global telecommunications company with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa; The cranks amongst the top four mobile service providers globally in terms of subscribers.
SoftBank is a leading Internet company that aims to provide a range of services including mobile communications, broadband infrastructure, fixed-line telecommunications, internet culture, and others. SoftBank’s corporate vision is to “make people happy through information revolution” and it continuously strives to create synergies among various content and services within the Group. The team behind BSB consists of Atsushi Taira, Kavin Bharti Mittal, Madhu Nori and Mike Kayamori
About Hike, it’s available globally on iOS, Android, Blackberry, WP, S40, and S60.
According to Trak.in some of the features which make Hike unique are:
- Sharing of files upto 100 MB
- Smartphone to feature phone messaging option
- Offline usage
- Support of different Indian languages
- Hiding “last seen” data
- Password protected messages, etc
In the blog, it is mentioned that the app also makes messaging a whole lot more expressive by adding localized sticker packs such as ‘Things Indians Say’ and a playful Bollywood pack. Hike Offline is another India-centric feature that lets users send free messages to their friends who’re offline. With a number of users in India hopping in and out of wi-fi and data networks this feature is a boon to keep messaging seamless.
In another industry-first innovation, the company introduced 2-way Chat Themes, allowing users to change the chat background for both them and their friends adding a whole lot more context to conversations.
As mentioned on the blog, they have hit #1 on Android and iOS app stores. Hike has crossed the 20 Million users milestone, adding 5M in just 3 months. Hike is one of the fastest growing mobile applications to be born out of India.
Hike reminds me of the famous song Made in India by Alisha Chenoy. How we Indians love everything Indian, but buy everything foreign, also prefer foreign vacation but then we always say we are Indians. Hopefully Made in India app Hike’s popularity will prove that time is changing and we are now accepting everything Indian.
Stay connected and stay Indian.