Truecaller in talks with Indian smartphone makers for app integration, says co-founder
What are your views on the Indian market?
India has always been our largest market. We have been exploring different opportunities on how to grow and move into other adjacent areas. We will be making more announcements soon. It is not going to be totally different from what we are doing.
We have built an identity platform, which we try to utilize in different ways. We have products like True SDK and Truecaller priority. It all ties back into vision which is to build a safe and efficient communication spot, based on true identities.
What is the next big thing Truecaller is working on?
We have been spending past 6 months in exploring new things, primarily in India, to understand where we need to spend time to make communications safe and efficient. A big barrier for a lot of people has been language. Most of the apps today are translated to 2-3 languages, but our apps already available in 12 different indic languages. And, we will continue to push out more of these languages. That’s a core piece of making Truecaller available for everyone.How many handset vendors you are working with?
We are working with around 20 Indian, Chinese, US and European handset vendors. We speak to a lot of OEMs and they all are at different typed of integrations. Our native integration has received positive consumer feedback. We launched one device with Intex and Blu, and these devices feature Truecaller as their default dialer. In these native dialers, customers get integrated experience – it is a part of our way to seamlessly intergate into Android OS. We are also working with other OSes like iOS and Microsoft to similar experience. With native integration, the experience is really powerful.
Any update on the OnePlus partnership?
We have a really great engagement with them. One of their co-founders, Carl Pei, is Swedish. We share similar backgrounds and share love of each other’s products. We are going to figure out a way to work together. What is most important to us is the full value Truecaller can give to users, and what is important to them is tightly integrated software with hardware. We are working on that. I am sure you will hear more about it soon.
In the past, you had talked about a women-centric product for the Indian market…
We have actually built a product, which is targeted towards women. It’s built within Truecaller, so it’s not a new app, rather is a service. We are going to launch it. We really aim to not only make you feel secure but be able help you in such situations where you need to be have access to people and send distress signals.
Do you see your base growing faster after launching this feature?
There’s been a lot of smartphone sale happening in India. We are hoping to see more people adopting not only our apps but other such apps to feel secure.
What are your views on customers’ privacy concerns?
It’s common for growing servicesto bump into different privacy concerns. We are now past that point. We are in the market for 6-7 years, and we have earned trust of users and community. All these mechanisms are built in the app where users know what information they want to show. We have been able to build a communication app, which has earned the trust of 250 million users.
We work with privacy concerns all the time around the services that we have launched, following the guidelines as a responsible company.
What is the current manpower strength in India?
We are around 10 people in India. You can expect this number to grow.
How big is the subscriber base in India?
We have 150 million users are in India. We can see fantastic growth happening in India as we continue to explore market and spend time here. We are in a position to grow stronger. It has been a top app among the likes of WhatsApp. We will continue to be in a stronger position on App store. The trend we are seeing is that we are growing very fast and market is growing really fast. Overall it’s a very positive strong.A majority of mobile users are on feature phone. Do you plan to tap that base?