Second, a startup that wants to fight the problem of phone spam offers a secondary, virtual mobile number without the need for a SIM card or additional device. This number, which can be activated via another app, can be shared at malls, pharmacies, restaurants, delivery apps, networking events and stores, without worrying about promotional text and call spam. The second reverses the traditional phone calling system by blocking all calls by default and sending them to voicemail unless you whitelist them individually. Subscribers can then choose to call back any blocked incoming calls without revealing their other number.
Since its launch, Second says it has blocked over 1.5 million messages and 5,00,000 calls from over 45,000 telemarketers. The company wants to reach 3-5 million users in the next 18-24 months. It also plans to launch a new ‘Passcode’ feature that will allow callers to access second customers without being blocked through a secret passcode method.
Gadgets 360 spoke to Doosha Founder and CEO Aditya Vuchi to know more about the company’s journey so far and future plans.
1. What were you doing before starting the second one?
Previously, I founded MediaMint (a global marketing operations firm) with over 1200 employees and Zippr (an addressing technology company) in multiple countries to deploy new age digital addressing for better governance of municipalities. partners with.
2. What inspired you to start another? How did you come up with the idea?
The second was born out of a bitter personal experience a few years back. I was shopping at a sporting goods store, but I decided to walk away after the billing clerk essentially shared my personal mobile number for “billing” purposes. With my previous experience in digital marketing, I fully understand the resulting behavioral framework for sharing personal information with businesses and for advertising purposes.
But this incident gave me the idea of creating a publicly shareable mobile number which can be given in places where a person is uncomfortable sharing his personal number.
We started working on this in the summer of 2019, partnering with telecom operators to bring this unique and innovative product to market.
3. Briefly explain what is the other and how does it help the users?
the second is a secondary, virtual mobile number that can be shared anywhere; Malls, supermarkets, delivery apps etc without worrying about misuse of phone numbers from telemarketers and scammers. By blocking all calls by default, the second one gives you complete control of who can and can’t.
We are in a good position for the following reasons:
- Simple Second Number: Full-digital and instant activation means users can quickly get a second number.
- Virtual: No SIM or additional device is required to operate the second number
- Focus on Privacy: The second provides unique call management features such as trusted contacts, trusted services and voicemail, which are not available with any telecom operator
4. Can you dial someone using your second number? How does that work?
While the second doesn’t have outgoing calls, it allows users to call back someone who called them. This ensures that there is no ambiguity about the call and if it can be something that is important to us. This call-back can be done through a call-bridging system which ensures that the personal number of the second user is secure. This is very similar to the communication between the customer and the food delivery personnel, where the personal number is hidden for customer security.
5. Are all incoming calls to your second number blocked by default?
The second one blocks all calls by default. All text messages sent to this secondary number are stored in the app. However, users always have the option to add a “trusted number” so that you can whitelist the contact and their call will come through. Another way to allow calls is to turn off the call blocker by time, location or until you need to. With this setting, all calls to that secondary number will be forwarded to your primary number and will not be blocked by default.
In the case where you need to call someone but you don’t want to use your primary number for this, the second one offers a limit of 100 minutes (every month), in which it can route the call through an intermediate cloud telephony system. routes from. Others can also call you on this secondary number.
6. Is the second one free to use?
The second, at its core, is about privacy. This means giving users full ownership of their data. As a result, we do not run ads or engage in data monetization of any kind.
Second’s revenue is based on the subscription plans currently available to our users.
Six month plan Rs. 749 and 12 month plan Rs. 999
7. How many users have signed up for the second so far?
While we do not discuss specific user numbers, Second has seen a wide range of use cases for the service.
- Enthusiastic shoppers who do not like to give their personal number to the store,
- Solopreneurs who use second as publicly listed numbers on platforms like Justdial and Google Places
- Celebrities/public figures who use their numbers for ultra-private communication
- Business persons who wish to split their professional and personal communication streams
8. The year you started the second was the year of the pandemic? What was it like dealing with all the challenges of being in the first year of business and adjusting around the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis?
The second released its mobile app in September 2020 and this week marks the one year anniversary of the product. While we had planned to launch around May, we had to postpone the product launch till September as consumer sentiment improved and people resumed their shopping activities. From a marketing perspective, we had to change our approach to focus more on digital advertising to get the word out there.
On the product front, we have been generous beneficiaries of the pandemic. As people made more online purchases and paid using digital channels, the fear of identity theft increased and Second’s privacy-focused mobile number was very well received.
9. Can you help to tell how far the other is in one year of its existence? when did it start where is it now
Since our launch, we have blocked over 1.5 million messages and 5,00,000 calls from over 45,000 telemarketers since our launch. We also see significant interest from businesses that want to use our telecom stack to better serve their customers. Over the past two months, we’ve added prominent names to our list of second users. We aim to reach 3-5 million users in the next 18-24 months
10. What does Zomato’s recent IPO mean for tech startups in India?
The Zomato IPO ushered in a new era of public companies, favoring the Amazon-model investing aggressively in customer and business growth. India is a land of opportunities; And that requires pioneers like Zomato to inspire the necessary behavioral changes (in this case, to order from nearby restaurants) to make a lasting impact. This growth is great for startups and early stage investors, where IPOs become a real route to get returns. It also ensures that Indian startups not only hand over international funds to enjoy returns and ownership but also companies built with hard work and time.
11. What are the other plans in future?
One of the recurring use cases we identified is the number one use in markets such as FB Group, OLX and others, where lack of trust is a major concern. To further protect and facilitate our users, we are launching “Passcode”, which is a way for callers to access second customers (without being blocked) if they have a secret passcode that is specified as a unique Can be shared across platforms. These passcodes can be turned on/off in other apps, giving our users complete control over who can access them.
12. Do you have any management mantra/advice you would like to share with future entrepreneurs?
hope – reality = despair
Entrepreneurship involves working with multiple internal and external stakeholders. Having an operating framework ensures that your decisions are consistent to everyone around you. In my case, the closer the expectations are to reality, the less frustrating it is.
13. What is Employee Power? Is the other currently recruiting?
The second is a small, agile team of 25+ product, engineering, marketing and customer operations professionals working from different parts of the country. We believe that early stage teams need to be agile, decisive and quick in execution and this is the key to our success. As a leader, I spend a significant amount of time listening to our customers and developing products for long-term growth and expansion. the other wants to advance the team; Product managers, full-stack developers, sales executives and support representatives.