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  1.    #1  
    HI Guys,

    Hoping for some feedback to see what you would think is cool vs. not before I go and build this:

    I'm thinking of creating a service that allows you to make inexpensive international calls from the US using your Treo (or any smartphone) without hassles. By that I mean, you need to just be able to dial an international number from your address book. To set it up, you would go to a website, put in your Treo phone number, pre-pay for usage (like $10 or $50 or whatever) using a creditcard, and then your Treo would be "enabled" for international rates way below what the cell carriers are charging us. Whenever you call an international number, it would route to my service and then deduct the cost of those minutes from your pre-paid account. You would still have to pay for your local airtime charges though...like when you call a 1-800 number from a cellphone.

    When your balance gets low, you would refill your account directly from your Treo in 30 seconds.

    In exchange from the slight hassle of it being pre-paid, you would cut your international bill by 60, 70%?

    What do you think? Would there be a market for this?

    Thanks!
    Wael
  2. #2  
    i call China and Europe all the time... If the rates were right, sign me up!

    I am currently using www.pinzoo.com for my international calls from my Sprint phone -- if you can beat those rates, then you got one customer for sure... If you can't then I'll stick with Pinzoo, because I can still recharge my minutes from my Treo via the Web (although it probably wouldnt be "integrated" like the solution you are talking about.)
  3. #3  
    Umm...doesn't this already exist? I've used a Net2Phone direct calling cards that offers no-pin dialing from your cellphone. Thus you no longer have to dial acct numbers or pins from the mobile. Furthermore, the cards can be pre-paid or automatically filled depending on your preference. This is a great solution and works great especially during N/W when most people have unlimited minutes. It a great cheap way to make international phone calls from your mobile IMO...

    P.S. of course VoIP would be nice via Gphone, but I haven't tried that yet!
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  4. #4  
    Sorry. Your about 5 years too late. I call the UK around 2 hours a week using onesuite.com. They use the business model your proposing (ie recharge via Credit Card). I have unlimited nights and weekends with Sprint so I call the UK for a total cost of 2.5c per minute. Its very cool and handy to be with the wife grocery shopping in San Francisco and talking on my 600 to my parents for an hour for a total of $1.50 . Truly killing 2 birds with one stone.
    Onesuite allows you to setup your account so that there system recognises the phone your calling from and you simply enter a 3 digit code to patch you thru to any number you have determined as a Favorite. I love it, and it saves me around $30 a month over AT&T's residential international calling plan.

    P.S. With onesuite.com there are absolutely NO EXTRA CHARGES like you get with other discount plans ie monthly fee, connection fee.
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  5. #5  
    bah.. don't shoot the guy down yet... Give him a chance to see what he is offering... It may or may not be a better solution with better prices...

    Elaborate on everything if you would.
  6. #6  
    I've also been using one for quite a while that I'm very happy with. I dal the access number, press the additional digits key, and when I'm signed into my account, press the predefined shortcut number on my Treo keypad that I set up on the web. Only costs me 3.5 cents per minute with unlimited nights and weekends. Try here if you want to look at another prepaid site.
  7.    #7  
    Interesting feedback. Looks like there are some users of these services out there. I run a company, http://www.mychitchat.com that offers services similar to those brought up here. We also have no fees, and if you call to places besides the cheapest places in the world, our rates are better than the competition. We also have the PIN-skip feature and all that other stuff.

    I guess what I was talking about was something more integrated than these services, but it seems that users are happy with what they have. If it were to be developed, there would need to be a market for it, and with rates so low in the industry that would be tough!

    Thx,
    Wael
  8.    #8  
    OH yeah, I went to the Sprint Store and went to my http: www.mychitchat.com URL on a Treo 600, and was amazed at how well it formatted everything! Fast too...this thing rocks. I want one so badly so I can just be anywhere talking to a friend and say, "oh you want to sign up for my service? Sure, check this out" whip out the Treo, put in their info, instantly activate their account, and then say, "ok now try calling my service's 1-800 from your cellphone, it should say you have $10 on your account."
  9. #9  
    If there's anyone else from the UK reading this thread then I can thoroughly recommend telediscount.

    I've been using them for about a year now - they have no sign-up, no pins: you just dial their number wait a couple of seconds, then dial the international number.

    I call New Zealand a lot which is a local call (0845 - uses my free minutes on Orange) with telediscount.
  10. #10  
    Originally posted by wayzel

    I guess what I was talking about was something more integrated than these services, but it seems that users are happy with what they have. If it were to be developed, there would need to be a market for it, and with rates so low in the industry that would be tough!

    Thx,
    Wael
    Actually, I think there in fact could be a market for this depending on how much integration you're talking about. If you created nice PalmOS client/dialer that allowed for easy international dialing w/o pins etc as well as an interface to check acct balance, add funds, get county codes, integrate with address book, and at the same time offer similarly competitive rates, then I would seriously consider! Thus, I think if you could offer a seamless, integrated solution with similar rates, you could have a nice product that could take advantage of the features of the Treo600. Anyway that's my .02 cents...
    _________________
    aka Gfunkmagic

    Current device: Palm Pre
    Device graveyard: Palm Vx, Cassiopeia E100, LG Phenom HPC, Palm M515, Treo 300, Treo 600, Treo 650, Treo 700p, Axim X50v, Treo 800w



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  11. #11  
    www.bigzoo.com
    Excellent online experience and stellar customer service.

    Only downside is occasional noisy connection and some probs w. dtmf tone trqnsmission.
  12.    #12  
    Alright then...I am going to try to get this created for smartphone users. (http://www.mychitchat.com)

    In the meantime, anyone who wants to use it just dials our 1-800 number, waits a few seconds. and then dials their international destination. I know it's not perfect because it can't pull your desired destination number straight from your address book, but hopefully later we can get this sorted out? In the meantime you guys can use the speeddial function.

    Here's the plan. Does it sound good?

    1) Integrated application that allows you to access the ChitChat service (http://www.mychitchat.com) Check balance, rates, calling history, recharge your account, etc. all on the Treo.

    2) when you want to make a call, you just look up the number in your address book (or in the client we create) and it goes through the ChitChat service.

    If you have any input, please feel free to add it. Thanks!
  13. #13  
    I call Germany all the time using Linq telecom. It knows my number so I don't have to dial a password for access. Its extremely cheap (around .10 a minute). Don't see what this service will add.
  14.    #14  
    There are several benefits:

    1) it's less than half the price you are currently paying... (around 4.6 cents I think?)
    2) you can access all of your account information (usage, previous call history, balance, rates, etc.) directly from your Treo...you can't even do that with your regular wireless bill yet.
    3) you can refill your account in 30 seconds (again direct from Treo)
    4) there are no hidden fees of any sort

    I don't know about Linq Telecom, but I'll check them out.
  15. #15  
    I call Germany all the time using Linq telecom. It knows my number so I don't have to dial a password for access. Its extremely cheap (around .10 a minute).
    My friend. Go to http://www.onesuite.com and get Germany for 3.5c per minute. No extra charges, very professional outfit. I have had them for 3 months now and give them a solid 10/10
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  16.    #16  
    Being in this industry, I'll admit that I'm partial to my company, but honestly, here's all the advice I can give you all:

    It just depends on where you are calling. Bigzoo and OneSuite are ChitChat's biggest competitors and are both good companies. Sure, if you just call Western Europe, they'll save you maybe half a cent a minute. But if you have a need to call other places, ChitChat comes out much cheaper. Just compare a few random countries if you have the inclination. Bigzoo also has a maintenance fee. OneSuite, I admit, does not. They are all good companies!


    Cheers,
    WM

    http:www.mychitchat.com
  17. #17  
    i second that. . . I've been using OneSuite for 2 years now. Very satisfied with them.

    Having the ability to access your account from the Treo will not get me switch. I don't call internationally much though so recharging/looking at call history on the Treo doesn't apeal to me much.
  18. #18  
    wayzel,

    I think there would be some interest in your app, specially for calling places other than Western Europe. Hope you'll provide upgrades on your progress.
  19. #19  
    Is OneSuite still the top dog in this category? I have heard several positive comments on TreoCentral and nothing negative yet... It's good to see others trying to improve on it...
  20. zxt
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    #20  
    Well based on my own experience Onesuite still the best phone card out there. Low rates, clear lines and very good customer service, these 3 combinations makes Onesuite stands out from the rest. They also got voip feature now.Even if you don't have a landline or a mobile phone but got a good internet connection then you can make calls from anywhere...from Istanbul to Australia to the Philippines. As long as you got a computer and fast internet then you can call from any country to any country.

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