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Urban Planet taps Siteminis to launch travel translation mobile Web site

Travelers who need to translate common phrases in a foreign language can do it with a new mobile travel Web site,, featuring both written and audio translations that can be used on any mobile phone with Web access. was launched in a joint venture by Siteminis, a specialist in mobile Web site development, and Urban Planet, a provider of educational and informational content created specifically for worldwide mobile delivery. Available initially in 10 languages, is offering travelers a fully functional free trial for a limited time—a monthly subscription for $4.95 per month.

Mobile Commerce Daily’s Dan Butcher interviewed Marci Troutman, founder/CEO of Siteminis, Atlanta. Here is what she had to say:

What is Urban Planet’s strategy behind the launch of the mobile site?
Through launching Travelingo, in partnership with Siteminis, Urban Planet Mobile is offering the sophisticated English-speaking traveler the opportunity to learn important phrases in 10 of the most popular languages on the go, on their mobile simply and quickly.

Urban Planet Mobile, “the mobile education company,” provides English language lessons worldwide, delivered daily on the mobile phone via SMS.

There was tremendous interest from the American market for a basic and simple program to either work as an introduction to a foreign language or to help with learning the most useful phrases needed for travel.

Travelingo is a natural progression from the core business of teaching English internationally and since there is an identifiable market and demand for the product.

What is the target demographic?
Travelingo is intended for the traveler intent on experiencing another language and culture more fully through practicing useful phrases before traveling and having the ability to discover and use the language during the trip.

Instead of having to carry a secondary device, a dictionary or phrase book, or trying to convert language CDs to a more portable version, Travelingo is on the go and on the mobile.

It’s available on the device you are already carrying, it’s searchable, it’s simple and it’s written phonetically with audio for greater ability to master the language as spoken.

The product is for the busy, sophisticated traveler who wants access without being burdened with some one-trick-pony gadget like a pocket translator, one who welcomes the ability to use the ubiquitous mobile phone more fully.

That being said, Travelingo is not technologically difficult to use and is for the everyman.

What challenges does Siteminis address for Urban Planet?
Siteminis addresses the challenges that limit the use of mobile to an SMS solution, carrying the ability for translation to a cross platform mobile Web solution, easily accessible to anyone in any country regardless of carrier or phone type, simply by clicking on the mobile Web and going to

What is the mobile site’s payment mechanism?
We integrated with a PayPal payment solution to ensure the familiarity and safety of the consumers hitting the site and purchasing.

The payment system is set up on a reoccurring payment scenario for ease of use to the customers, one-time set up and never a need to retouch unless there is an expired card or issue with the payment process in place, at which point a customer is sent a message to their account in order to fix the issue and re-upload an alternative payment method.

How will Urban Planet and Siteminis get the word out about this site?
A Travelingo Facebook page has been set up.

We will also incorporate other social media outlets like Twitter, Linkedin and YouTube for updates, messaging and overall use of the product for our clients, along with a full SEO and SEM approach, along with working alongside major media and travel companies to incorporate banner ads, links and frame-in-frame solutions for getting out in front of the consumer.

What are Urban Planet’s other mobile products?
Urban Planet Mobile is launching Travelingo for the English speaker wanting to learn useful phrases for mostly pleasure travel, though business phrases are included in the service and program.

Other lines developed and distributed by Urban Planet Mobile focus on education and include SAT Remix, audio vocabulary lessons delivered daily via SMS to any phone, launching in the U.S. in mid-August at

Also by Urban Planet Mobile are the Urban English lines of daily audio English lessons delivered worldwide via mobile.

These include Urban English Basic, a line of more than 400 English audio language lessons, Urban English Social and Business, an intermediate line of English lessons focused on teaching communication and increasing comprehension, and Urban English TOEFL, the advanced line of lessons helping international students prepare for the exam to study in the U.S. at the university level.

These programs are being launched in Asia and South America by year end and in development are SAT Remix programs for grammar and math, and animated and video lessons for smartphones for all Urban Planet Mobile lines.