Telecommunications companies in Singapore are getting in on the voice and instant messaging market, and their way in is actually coming from a surprising source: Nimbuzz, the VoIP and messaging application available for iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, and almost every other operating system under the sun.

The firm, which is backed by the same investors behind Skype, is in talks with “one of the big telcos” here about a revenue-sharing model, chief executive Vikas Saxena told The Business Times.

Nimbuzz, headquartered in India, makes a great deal — likely most — of its money by charging for outgoing calls to landline and mobile phones without the app installed, though calls and messages between all Nimbuzz users are free. In order to place such a call using the app’s NimbuzzOut feature, you must first purchase credit from Nimbuzz.

Nimbuzz has apparently reached an agreement with Singapore-based mobile carriers to share revenues associated with the VoIP and messaging app’s user transactions, earning Nimbuzz friends where most VoIP applications seem to be nothing but competition as they eat at carrier revenues associated with SMS messaging and voice calls.

A great many of Nimbuzz’s 100 million users are based in South Asia, where the company has similar revenue-sharing plans in place with mobile carriers. Companies there take 60 percent of the revenue from Nimbuzz-related transactions while other markets get a 30 percent cut.

Photo: Nimbuzz

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