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Post Updates to Google+ via SMS

mobile_phone2Google has updated the post-via-SMS feature on Google+ by extending support to 41 new countries, and by doing so took the total from just 2 to a whooping 43. The 43 countries that Google selected has very low adoption of mobile broadband that can be attributed to high cost and poor coverage. India, for example, has 900 million mobile subscribers as of March 2012, but only 10-12 million of those subscribers are on 3G services. Smartphone usage in India is quite low as well with even the most optimistic reports putting the numbers at 25 million. However, all subscribers have access to cheap SMS services.

When Google+ launched in June last year, SMS features were available only in India and the US. After the expansion, Google+ SMS is available in 41 new countries:

Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Bahrain, Benin, Cambodia, Cameroon, Congo (DRC), Cote D'Ivoire, Egypt, Ghana, Guinea, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Morocco, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Zambia.

The Google+ SMS feature allows users to post updates to their Google+ account and also receive notification about their Google+ activity, such as comments received, using the SMS feature on their mobile phones.


To get started, add and activate your phone number on the Google+ settings page. You can also add a PIN number for added security. While actual SMS attacks are quite rare, it is technically possible for an attacker to spoof an SMS and send updates to your Google+ account that appears as though it came from you. Once you setup a PIN, include the PIN before your SMS post and circles. For example:

"A1B2C3 Will see you at the game +soccer folks" where “A1B2C3” is your PIN number.

The list of supported carriers and the phone number where the SMS needs to be sent is available on this page, and also reproduced below:

Country Carrier System number
Afghanistan AWCC 2125400
Afghanistan Etisalat 8080400
Afghanistan Roshan 4664400
Algeria Nedjma +213558996400
Angola Unitel 46645400
Bahrain Viva 87700400
Bahrain Zain 94004400
Benin Moov 95650400
Cambodia Smart 1000400
Cameroon MTN 8741400
Cameroon Orange +23798008301
Congo, Democratic Republic Vodacom +243822063400
Congo (DRC) Vodafone +243822063400
Cote D'Ivoire MTN 4442400
Cote D'Ivoire Orange 2258500
Cote D'Ivoire Moov 41918400
Egypt Mobinil 34400
Ghana MTN 1980400
Ghana Tigo 8300
Ghana Airtel 5400
Guinea Orange 500000400
India All carriers +919222222222
Indonesia Axis 71400
Indonesia Hutchison 4665400
Indonesia Indosat 367400
Indonesia Telkomsel 4664400
Indonesia XL Axiata 94640400
Iraq Zain 2601400
Israel Orange 1000400
Israel Pelephone 10400
Jordan Umniah 99813400
Jordan Zain 909070400
Kazakhstan GSM Kazakhstan 30400
Kenya Airtel Kenya +254786100400
Kenya Safaricom +254700999400
Kenya Yu +254754001400
Kenya Orange 10400
Kuwait Viva 5078400
Kuwait Wataniya 1971400
Kuwait Zain 898400
Kyrgystan Megacom 46245400
Liberia Cellcom 8400
Malawi Airtel Zain +265991903400
Malawi TNM 80400
Malaysia Digi 222350400
Malaysia Maxis 260060400
Maldives Dhiraagu +9604664400
Maldives Wataniya Maldives 4645400
Morocco Inwi 333400
Mozambique Vodacom 8418400
Niger Orange 91995268
Nigeria Airtel +2348021600400
Nigeria Glo 20202400
Nigeria MTN 40700
Nigeria Starcomms 33166400
Nigeria Visafone 610400
Pakistan Mobilink 2434400
Philippines Globe Telecom 2662400
Philippines Smart Communications 4664400
Philippines Sun Cellular 22020400
Saudi Arabia Mobily 611011400
Saudi Arabia Saudi Telecom Company 88555400
Saudi Arabia Zain 710466400
Senegal Orange +221774699400
Senegal Tigo 22408400
Sierra Leone Comium 60400
Sri Lanka Dialog 4664400
Sri Lanka Mobitel 89000400
Sri Lanka Etisalat 103200400
Tanzania Tigo 46400
Tanzania Vodacom +255766790400
Thailand DTAC 42662400
Thailand TRUE 47640400
Tunisia Tunisiana 871222400
Tunisia Orange 871818400
Uganda MTN 902801400
Uganda Orange + 256790791900
Uganda Uganda Telecom +256715887400
United States All carriers 33669
Uzbekistan Ucell 45400
Vietnam Vinaphone 9666400
Zambia Zamtel 3566400

You can also receive notification alerts about various activity on your Google+ account. These notifications can be customized at a granular level.

SMS updates and notification is not a feature exclusive to Google+ though. Facebook also supports posting of status messages and receiving updates from friends and other notifications via SMS.


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