New Free SMS Service Stops Worry with One Text

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Following recent emergency alerts, 8/8 sees the launch of textOK.com - a free service helping users to tell all their friends & family they're ok with just one SMS. Texts cost just 25p to use the service, and all profits go to Cancer Research, Friends of the Earth & NCH with the aim of raising £100,000.

Whether it’s 9/11, 7/7 or any emergency that causes panic, one problem always hits hard – friends and family are always desperately waiting to find out if their loved ones are ok.

Only one month on from the atrocities in London, 8th August sees the launch of http://www.textOK.com – a solution that will allow users to let all their contacts know they are safe by sending just one text message.

One of the team behind the innovative project, Simon Melaniphy, a Director of Bournemouth based Refreshed Media, remembers when he first dreamt up the idea: “I was travelling on the tube only a few days after 7/7 and took a moment to think how many people must have been worried sick about work colleagues, friends and family, whilst those in London just couldn’t make calls on their mobiles.”

Backing this up, on 7/7 a spokeswoman for Virgin Mobile said “There are so many people making calls at the moment it is taking a while for people to get through”. Whilst BT were saying that so many people were turning to fixed line phones once they found that the mobile network was down, that it was running near capacity too. A single SMS uses so little bandwidth that contact is usually achievable first time, and reduces strain on the already overburdened mobile networks.

A solution for this type of problem has to be simple to use, and from arriving at http://www.textOK.com a new user is only 2 minutes away from having registered their number and listing up to 20 contacts’ email addresses, and it really is as easy as that. From that moment on, texting “OK” to 60999 will recognise the users’ mobile number, which in turn will send all of their contacts a pre-written email confirming they are OK. For a few more key-presses, typing a personal message after “OK”, the service can pass that on too.

This simplicity could prove useful for all age groups, Simon Melaniphy adds “We see textOK not only helping during terror attacks; for example, children away on school trips could easily get in touch with parents or friends back home with just one text. There are more exciting developments planned for textOK in the next 3 months to help people in a variety of ways.”

In the spirit of all great Internet ideas, textOK is being provided for FREE – there’s no charge to sign up or run an account, and all profit from sending a text, which costs 25p + a normal SMS, is being split between Friends of the Earth, NCH and Cancer Research, a charity close to the heart of Director Sarah Baker: “I’m already in training for a trek across the Great Wall of China with Cancer Research this year, and our aim is to boost that by raising over £100,000 for these positive causes through textOK, whilst helping people with a very useful service”.

http://www.textOK.com goes live 8am 8th August 2005. The service can be trialed in advance for media use from http://www.textOK.com/index.php

About textOK

textOK has been built and is owned and operated by Refreshed Media Ltd (http://www.refreshedmedia.com), a privately owned Online Marketing company based in Bournemouth, Dorset by Directors Simon Melaniphy BSc (Hons), 31, and Sarah Baker BA (Hons), 27.    All profits from text revenue will be split evenly between the 3 nominated charities. More information and logos/press photo is available from Sarah Baker or Simon Melaniphy on 0845 REFRESH (0845 733 73 74) or via email: sarah.baker@refreshedmedia.com (07771 548993) / simon.melaniphy@refreshedmedia.com (07971 692124)

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