ChaCha Loses Chatrooms & Goes For Mobile Search

ChaCha Logo
“Thanks for using ChaCha’s experimental mobile service. What is your question today? *beep*”
-ChaCha’s Automated Voicemail

ChaCha has shifted their strategy. ChaCha was known for having a chat room with guides that help you search for items. Now ChaCha has automated search through the use of automated text messaging and an 800 number. ChaCha’s number is 1-800-224-2242 (1800-2CHACHA). You tell the automated voice a question such as where can you find certain restaurants.

Here is how my first session went with them.
Amit to ChaCha (9:57PM):
Where can I find an Applebee’s in downtown Minneapolis?
ChaCha text msg response (9:58PM): Welcome to ChaCha. Your phone just got smarter. Ask away. Your first answer will come shortly. Other charges may apply. Send HELP for help. Send STOP to quit.
ChaCha text msg response (9:58PM): ChaCha is working on your question: Where can I find an Applebees in downtown Minneapolis? You should receive an answer in a few minutes
ChaCha text msg response (10PM): Applebee’s 5277 Central Ave. NE Fridley, MN

The service seems to be working functionally, but not accurately. Fridley, MN is a city that is about 10 miles away from downtown Minneapolis. 1-800-GOOG-411 seems to have better results in terms of finding restaurants. However, Google’s 411 service is not as smart.

With ChaCha, you can ask the automation specific questions like, “Who was the first President of the United States?” And about 3 minutes later, ChaCha would send you a text message such as “On April 30th, 1789, George Washington took his oath of office as the first President of the United States.” ChaCha gave more than I asked for which is great.

ChaCha’s new service makes my smartphone even smarter.

“Search with a Guide” will no longer be offered by the company, but ChaCha guides can work as Voice Transcribers or Text Guides. The non-guided ChaCha search will still be available at and will be known as ChaCha Classic.

Information Source:
[1] TechCrunch: ChaCha Ditches Guided Search Model. I Love To Hate This Startup by Michael Arrington

This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at

ChaCha Loses Chatrooms & Goes For Mobile Search Comments

  1. Amit Elhanan says:

    Dude, I love Chacha, I’ve been using it since they started the sms version and they have been so helpful. I had to meet my parents for a broadway show but I did not remember when the show started or where the theater was, so I asked Chacha and they replied back with all the information I needed. The one problem I have with it is when I first started using it and would ask for an address- they would just give me the street address, but here in Manhattan I usually need to know cross streets as well, so I learned that my question needs to be specific. So now when I’m looking for a location I ask for address including cross streets. the last search I did with Chacha was for the address(+cross streets) for a bar with many different types of beer, and when I got my reply it had the address and the person who wrote it also said “Have a beer for me as well, I enjoy wheat beers)

  2. Amit Chowdhry says:

    That response you got back is awesome! I like how ChaCha has a personality to it by having real people write back responses. No search algorithm can ever replace humans with personalities finding information for you.

  3. Hey stay with smile says:

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