Sprint Lets Subscribers Use Their Name as Their NumberBy: Sean Patterson - October 8, 2012
I’ll admit it. There are only a couple of numbers in my smartphone’s contacts list that I know by heart, and I only know those because I’ve known them since before I got a cell phone. I couldn’t tell you my girlfriend’s phone number from memory if you put me on the spot.
Today, Sprint is making it easier for all of us by unveiling its StarStar Me program. The feature will function as a sort of phone number DNS service, allowing users to pick a short name, word, or phrase, proceeded by two asterisks, in place of their number. For example, I might choose to be contacted by **SEANP, my first name and last initial (the nickname has to be 5 to 9 characters long, so I can’t use just my first name).
“Sprint customers will be the first people to get StarStar Me,” said Kevin McGinnis, vice president of Product and Technology Development at Sprint. “We expect this service to be especially popular with professionals, students and family customers, who can tailor its use to their individual preferences, lifestyles and interests with a few simple clicks.”
The only catch is that the service won’t be free. Sprint subscribers will be charged $3 per month for the feature. There is a smartphone app that goes along with it, though. It enables features such as managing incoming calls, automatic texting, and sending contact information, including social media accounts. The app is currently available for Android, and will be coming to iOS soon.
Sprint has set up a website for subscribers to choose their StarStar nickname, and those who want the service should sign up quickly to get their desired moniker. As expected, many common names are already taken, though some provocative combos such as **STEVEJOBS, **BILLGATES, **BRUCELEE, **TOMHANKS and **BOBAMA are still available.
Below is an explanatory ad that Sprint released to coincide with the launch of the service. Though **CHLOE and **JAVAGUY are taken, some of the nicknames shown in the video (such as **SUPERMOM) are still available.