VoIP applications like Gorilla Mobile, Truphone and others are getting a lot of traction on iPhone.
One of the most important calls I make during the week is the one to my mother, followed by another one to my baby brother. These are international long distance calls, and for the first 15 years of my American life, those calls went over AT&T’s wired or wireless networks, forging a very special bond with Ma Bell.
This past year, however, that bond has been broken. AT&T has been replaced by Truphone, a UK-based mobile VoIP company that offers better quality voice calls at lower rates and doesn’t require me to own a landline. A WiFi-enabled Nokia phone is all it takes. (These days, I am totally in love with my Nokia E61.)
Truphone has become indispensable to my work and personal life, and perhaps that is why I’m glad to learn it just raised a whopping $32.7 million in Series B funding from “new investors,” although the company wouldn’t name names. Previous investors who have pumped in over $24.5 million in Series A funding — Burda Digital Ventures, Eden Ventures, Independent News & Media and Wellington Partners — came back with more cash as well.
Mobile VoIP and IM client maker fring has teamed up with Boingo Wireless, a wireless aggregation company. If you have a Boingo mobile account, then you can use fring on your Wi-Fi enabled mobile phones at Boingo hotspot. I think as more dual-mode phones hit the market, this kind of integration becomes necessary.
One of the most common requests made by Skype users is “How can I access Skype from my mobile device?” Skype user needs on mobile are different — but it is the data protocols and data plans that place the final limitation on migrating a VoIP client to mobile.
[qi:090] Mobile VoIP is going to become a major force over the next five years, rapidly outpacing voice over Wi-Fi, according to a recently released report by research firm Disruptive Analysis. The report predicts that the number of VoIP over 3G users will top 250 million by the end of 2012 — from virtually zero in 2007. The caveat, of course, is if carriers allow it. If T-Mobile’s recent fracas with Truphone is any indication, the carriers are worried about VoIP over 3G.
* mig33, a mobile communications service provider, is adding over 20,000 users a day and now has eight million subscribers. The company is adding new features and slowly becoming a mobile social network. And as they get their makeover, Jajah is adding a new service that reminds me of the old mig33, Rebtel and Talkplus.
* Jajah’s new service, called Jajah Direct, will allow you to make international calls for free or at local rates. Go to the their Local Access Number web site, enter the international number you want to call and get connected. After your first call, you will receive a unique local number for each of your contacts that you can store in your phone or address book for future dialing.
Jajah’s Frederik Hermann just emailed and said that “you never have to be online to sign up for JAJAH Direct, you can sign up over the phone and manage your account from there. We will give out the local access number to our premier target groups, immigrants and expats on a flyer and they can go from there, no Internet access needed.”
Read More about A Mobile VoIP Forecast & What’s Up With Jajah, Raketu & mig33