Unlockd reveals first data reward service in Asia with ‘Swapps’ launch in Indonesia

Indonesian telco Axis is rolling out a new service which allows their customers to gain credit by viewing ads when they unlock their mobile homescreen.

The technology has been licensed from Australian-founded startup Unlockd, which recently launched in Asia through a partnership with Axis’ parent company Axiata.

Users have to install the app ‘Swapps’ and can then obtain monthly credit worth between 20-to-80 Singaporean cents, which saves them 32 per cent on their mobile bill, according to Unlockd.

To date, the company claimed to have returned US$10m in credits to users – which amounts to an average of US$10 per user. It also provides the app as a white label products to other companies.

Speaking to Mumbrella Asia as Tech in Asia in May, Unlockd’s chief operating officer Aliza Knox said that the app had attracted one million users across four markets – including the United States and Britain – since its launch 15 months ago. India, The Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore are next on the target list for launches within the next nine months.

Aliza Knox

Commenting on Swapps, the former Twitter Asia-Pacific head added: “It is truly the smartest way to use a smart phone and our growth in other markets is testament to it.

“Our partnership with AXIS in one of the world’s fastest growing smartphone markets will see us adding value to the country’s hyper-connected youth consumer segment. We understand this group of people is extremely driven by value and are glued to their mobile devices so we are confident that Swapps will be able to engage them in new and innovative ways.”

The rewards-based mobile screen ad model is becoming an increasingly competitive space in South East Asia, with New Zealand-founded start-up Postr recently launching in Singapore and Indonesia.

The platform uses a similar model of rewarding users with free data in return for lockscreen or screensaver ads. Founder Milan Reinartz recently told Mumbrella Asia that: “We focused on Asia because the market lends itself well to sponsored data because it is not quite as commoditised, as it is in very developed markets like North America and Europe.

“In developing markets, we can see that people are very keen on getting the free data. We usually see that the higher the data on offer, the higher the app retention.”


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