The Google India Blog announced that users can now easily post status updates to Google+ via SMS. For some foreign countries where mobile internet isn’t always a given in all areas, this tool allows people to stay up to date without having to head over to an Internet cafe or finding a wi-fi signal. The feature is pretty simple, but adds to Google+’s buffet of services.
The service was originally available only to users in the US and India when Google+ was launched in June of 2011, but the update brings the service to 41 new countries, listed below.
Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Bahrain, Benin, Cambodia, Cameroon, Congo (DRC), Cote D’Ivoire, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Morocco, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Zambia.
The first step is to enter your phone number in the Google+ settings page, and this will then let you activate your phone for use on the network. You then have a specific number that you use which will allow you to post updates, and you’ll also receive comments on the update as SMS text messages from that phone number. Pretty cool stuff, and definitely an interesting way to compete with Twitter which was built with SMS in mind in the first place.
Alternatively, head over to the Google Mobile page to activate the service.