textPlus Seeks to “Redefine Global Communications”, Enabling International Calls from its Android AppDecember 13, 2012
The Next Web
by Ken Yeung
textPlus has announced that it is expanding its services to now allow international calls to be made right from its Android app. The mobile communications company believes that it can compete against other services like Skype or Vonage to make international calls to users’ loved ones by offering a lower rate and an opportunity to increase their number of minutes simply by participating in free things.
Starting today, any user with textPlus on their Android device in the United States and Canada can make calls to anywhere in the world — it doesn’t matter whether it’s an international mobile or landline. For those calls that are to other textPlus numbers, there will not be a charge. But for those calls outside of the network, rates start at $0.02 per minute — something that the company says is 10 times less expensive than normal international calling rates.
For textPlus, the idea of the company was never about group messaging, which is what most people probably associate it with. When we spoke with founder and CEO Scott Lahman back in October, he made the correction that it’s much more than that: “The key thing that users need to understand is that textPlus is meant to be a choice for all your communication, similar to a virtual operator.” Moving into international calling using your textPlus-provided phone number is definitely a sign that the company has branched out beyond text messages.
Lahman says that he wanted to roll out international calling because he saw that the most popular telephone routes in the world are from the United States to Mexico, India, the United Kingdom, and others — there are a lot of people calling internationally. For textPlus, it’s looking to target those people, plus those who travel abroad frequently.