Helping tourists with audio information on Sri Lanka archeological sites
Launched in January, 2011, mGuide is a mobile-based audio service of Mobitel, Sri Lanka’s national telecommunication partner, that provides comprehensive information on sites in the country that are of archeological and tourist interest. The service obviates the need to hire a guide at these sites as such guides often do not have comprehensive and authentic information although they are quite expensive. Moreover, often the information board erected at the site gives very little information.
Mobitel in collaboration with the Sri Lanka’s Ministry of National Heritage, the Department of Archaeology and Sri Lanka Tourism has assigned a short code to each site in the country which are of archeological or tourist interest. Sign boards have been put up at each of these sites indicating the code of the site.
The service is meant for pilgrims, travelers, holiday makers, tourists, students etc. The service can be used in two ways. By dialing 888 followed by the site code from a Mobitel connection, a user can listen to a description of the location. The service is extended to foreign tourists as well whereby they could simply dial 888 from their own mobile connection followed by the short code assigned to the location. The other method is where by dialing 888 the user will be directed to a menu from which the user could select a location.
The content used for the service has been approved by the Department of Archaeology. The service will soon be introduced in Hindi, French, German, Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Arabic.
Tourists are given a FREE mGuide MAP at the Bandaranayake International Airport with the site codes that enables the user to plan his/her tour agenda.
At present approximately 20,000 subscribers per month access the service.