Fetion Integrates SMS Text Messaging with the PC
The idea of being able to send or receive cell phone text messages on a computer is not a new one, but this Chinese software called “Fetion” (飞信 in Chinese, literally, “flying letter”) is new to me. In a recent AllSet Learning teacher training session, we were discussing various types of technology for learning, including ChinesePod, Anki, and Skritter, when 飞信 came up (weird English name: “Fetion”).
For now, Fetion is PC only, although it also has mobile versions. Its “smartphone” version is aimed at Windows Mobile users, not Android or iPhone users. This all makes a lot of sense if Fetion is targeting a younger Chinese demographic rather than professionals.
Fetion mixes social networking properties with communications management properties. One of the benefits it boasts is the ability to store all of your text messages offline on your computer (which Google Voice is currently doing in the US, but in the cloud). Here are the features listed on the Fetion website’s 特性 page:
– A multi-platform system means you’re always reachable
– Free text messaging
– Super-cheap rates for group voice chat
– Anti-harassment security functionality
– 24/7 customer service
I’ve got to say, this doesn’t seem especially impressive; this technology has been around for a while. It seems that Fetion has caught on with a sizable userbase, however. I’m curious how far it will go.
Have you used Fetion? What are your experiences with it? Is it useful? Do any of your Chinese friends use 飞信?