How does the irritating SMS 2.0 work? Perhaps if there are some of you who love your privacy being invaded by advertisements with every SMS sent, then you might think I am making a big fuss out of nothing. Anyway, here's the 2 sources of irritation the application posed for me:
1) While composing an SMS, a text-advert will appear as a horizontal bar at the bottom of the screen.
2) After sending out an SMS, a full page advertisement will appear and you have to click one button on the keypad to clear it.
One click only, what's the big deal? Well, not if you have to do this for every sms you send out and the advertisement just seem to hang for awhile before the details are cleared from the screen. It was a novel experience at the beginning but after 50 or more clicks, it grew tiresome and annoying.
To me, the matter is clear : this is a obviously an intrusion of one's privacy. Imagine someone shoving a printed advertisement into your face everytime you turn a street corner - I believe that is how many SMSes we send out daily - or more. What would you do? Remember, IN YOUR FACE. Moreover, last I recall, none of the advertisers had paid me screen space to flash their annoying ads. Get my drift???
WAIT A MINUTE. I am really annoyed now. I just googled SMS 2.0 and guess what I discovered?!! Click here to go to the SMS 2.0 web on a separate tab/ window to follow my train of thought.
The M1 operator claimed that the software is not their doing. Apparently, it may not be so.
See bottom center of the page.
SMS2.0 is brought to you in Singapore by:
M1 [the logo]
What a blatant lie made by the operator!
Check the following information out under the CHARGES link at the bottom left:
Download of SMS2.0 application is FREE! No data charges during download.
Content received from SMS2.0 is FREE!
Standard data charges apply only when you choose to connect to the Internet and browse for more information on the free content.
Read in between the lines. However cleverly worded "choose to connect" may be, it does mean that you CAN ACCIDENTALLY click on the free content which leads to PAID content based on STANDARD DATE CHARGES. Accidents can be costly - M1 knows that and it is probably exploiting this loophole stumbled upon by unknowing customers. Very insiduous indeed!
SMS charges remain as per your mobile service plan.
Terms and conditions apply in the use of this service. For more details, visit www.miworld.com.sg.
Note: When roaming, data charges including taxes/levies imposed by the foreign mobile operators may apply.
I've just spoken to another M1 operator. He did not deny the fact that M1 is behind the SMS 2.0 software. When I asked him why is the customer not informed that s/he would be bombarded with advertisements with every SMS composed AND sent, he repeated the same line like the previous female operator :
SMS 2.0 is a feature that comes with yours and other selected phone models.
My followup enquiry :
Do the other telcos sell the same handphone models with SMS 2.0?
Am I right to say that I had paid just for the handset?
That I had paid M1 just to use the telephone and sms services?
That I DID NOT pay for advertisements to appear on my handphone incessantly? Why did M1 not notify me that it has modified my brand new handset and without my consent?
The reply :
Sir, you can remove the application easily.
I rest my case.
To all of you out there who have yet to suscribe to M1 service : this is clearly an invasion of privacy which some futurists had warned about regarding 3G phones.
M1, by pre-installing /modifying handsets without the owner's prior knowledge, and an operator probably instructed to deny its association with SMS 2.0 with a white/grey lie until cornered by the irritable customer like yours truly? - is just TOO MUCH.