After using an oldtimer phone for too long, I feel liberated today due to my recent acquisition of the iPhone. Ok, I realize this might sound awkward, as the shiny object is one of the most lockedin devices of this era – yet some of the new phone possibilities just really turn me into an even happier guy than I normally am. The most recent example? Truphone’s latest iPhone app.
Truphone is a similar service like Nimbuzz, Fring, and a dozen of other mobile VoIP start-ups, and the first one to launch a VoIP application for the iPhone 3G. This is absolutely marvelous, as it allows you to save a stack of euros on calls abroad. Calls to any landline anywhere in the world are just 6 cents per minute, to mobile is 15 cents per minute. Note please that we’re talking about dollar cents here, so we basically get a 30 percent discount on the fare. On one condition though: you need to have access to wifi, as iPhone VoIP apps aren’t allowed to use 3G.
Screenshots from iPhone app store
After the simple activation process – confirm a call, login on the Truphone site, and validate email – I gave the app a shot. To keep it simple and clear, here’s a list of pro and cons.
- Truphones merges into the iPhone seamlessly, as it has almost the same UI as the iPhone’s phone application
- The sound quality is really good, sometimes crystal clear.
- Contacts are imported, so you can easily dial up your friends
- You get a four dollar credit to start with, thanks Truphone!
- A friend told me that when I called him with Truphone, he saw my regular number on the screen.
- When you receive a regular incoming call, your Truphone conversation is instantly killed
- Your elite contacts, “favorites”, aren’t imported
- No speaker phone option
Although the pro’s list is somewhat longer, the first con really sucks. I have to start every Truphone conversation with apologies, as the call might be terminated by an incoming call. Hence I won’t use the Truphone application for important calls abroad.
All in all, the Truphone iPhone app is a first good try and it will certainly help you to save money, especially when you live in Europe. Let’s hope they can find a way to stop those incoming calls, so Truphone can say they’re the iPhone 3G VoIP winner.