Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Friday, March 3, 2006

Receive Breaking News Via IM, SMS Or Email

A new Dutch-based service allows anyone to subscribe to her favorite news feeds and receive selected news items via instant messenger, SMS on mobile phone or email depending on her online presence "status" and personal preference settings.

Photo credit: Ronen

With such support one can remain in touch with critical breaking news items, or even with internal communications covering specific topics wherever one is: on the road, via SMS, directly on your preferred instant messenger or, if you are having a well-earned rest, in your email inbox.

You select the feeds, the filters and the routing preferences for the distribution of these news bits. The rest is all done automatically for you.

Here is what the inventor behind this new service had to say about it when I called him five minutes ago with no prior preparation. (Here is also a downloadable .mp3 / duration 5 mins / 1 MB)



The new service I am talking about is called and I must thank the courtesy of Marjolein Hoekstra that has pointed me to it yesterday.

Rasasa is a truly innovative and valuable service providing you with the ability to stay on top of your key selected news, RSS feeds and stories no matter where you are.

If you are online at your computer (whether PC, Mac or Linux) Rasasa will send you your selected news items via your preferred instant messenger. AOL IM, ICQ, Yahoo Messenger, MSN and Google Talk are all supported together with Jabber and any other IM complying with the XMPP protocol. (Skype support is coming next)

If you are not online with your instant messenger, Rasasa will then route critical news headlines to your email inbox with no restrain. There are in fact no limits to the number of of alerts you can receive through your IM or email inbox.

Not only.

For each RSS feed you decide to subscribe to you can apply simple filters that allow you to include and/or exclude very specific news items.

All of this is basically free. Nothing to pay for.

If you want to extend reach to your mobile phone you, so that SMS text messages are dispatched to you when you are not connected to the Internet via your computer you can easily do so. Setup takes a few seconds and any mobile phone capable of sending and receiving SMS messages can be used. From anywhere in the world.

Photo credit: Rob Parker

An excellently devised business model makes Rasasa also highly palatable to any individual who seriously needs to monitor, track or be kept abreast specific breaking news items or blog posts from a certain author or on a specific theme. Nothing that I know of can yet beat today Rasasa at this.

Subscription prices for Rasasa have been devised in a way that makes the service truly useful and extremely approachable even by those who traditionally avoid anything that needs to be paid for.

The entry subscription model costs in fact only € 1.99/month which includes unlimited "alerts" via email and instant messenger and up to ten text messages via SMS to your mobile phone. If you need that info, I wouldn't think a second about subscribing (at least for testing it out) to this brand new service.

More advanced subscription plans allow to increase the number of SMS-based text messages that one can receive in a month on a mobile phone. Outside of that, all alerts send to your IM and email remain all completely free.

Payment for your preferred subscription plan can be made online in a few seconds and via PayPal.
In the Netherlands it is even possible to pre-pay for it directly from your mobile phone (more info here).

To sign-up for the service go to:

More information and frequently asked questions:

A Rasasa bookmarklet allows one-click subscription from your preferred browser to any RSS feed present on the page you are visiting. The Rasasa bookmarklet identifies valid RSS/Atom feeds from any page you happen to be visiting and asks you for confirmation before adding any feed to your Rasasa account.

Rasasa provides also a free facility for bloggers and news site owners to place a small and free subscription button on their sites, that is customized to allow one-click subscription to receive Rasasa-powered news alerts via IM and email absolutely free.

Here is mine:
Add this feed to your Rasasa account

Rasasa is the brainchild of Maarten Wolzak of has designed and created the service you see today (beta), together with the help, support and advice from Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten and Patrick de Laive.

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Readers' Comments    
2006-03-09 12:37:38


Ah, but it's not! Rasasa actually checks where you are before sending IM, sms or email.
For me ZapTXT would, most of the time, be a very expensive way of receiving info I'd allready know because I'm online most of the time...
That widget sounds very interesting though!

2006-03-03 20:13:14


This sounds almost exactly like which has been around for almost a year... ZapTXT is a free service that also offers RSS filtering and email or SMS notifications. While SMS notification will only work for the North American users, there is a ZapTXT Mobile Widget that you can install on your mobile and have access to your RSS data from your mobile phone. That might be very useful when you're away from your PC. For example, when I get an alert from ZapTXT and I am not at my computer, I can just start ZapTXT Mobile Widget and access entire RSS post that triggered the alert.


posted by Robin Good on Friday, March 3 2006, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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