Vonage has released a new VoIP app that allows iPhone users – even those without Vonage accounts – to make international calls over Wi-Fi or 3G. The app, Vonage Time to Call [App Store Link], allows 15 minute calls to 100 countries for $1.99 or less, and to another 90 nations at costs between $2.99 and $9.99 per quarter hour, depending on the country. Charges are billed to your iTunes account.
As inexpensive as this might seem at first glance, however, the application may or may not be your best international VoIP option. For example:
If you use Time to Call to phone someone in Germany, you’ll pay $1.99 per 15 minutes, whether you’re calling a mobile or landline phone. A Skype credit call to a German T-Mobile or Vodafone mobile number can cost as much as $0.29 per minute, or $4.35 for a 15 minute chat, in which case the Vonage app is a bargain. But calls to a landline phone in Germany on Skype are only $0.02 per minute, which would set you back only 30 cents for a 15 minute mini-gab-fest.
And there are other iPhone VoIP solutions to consider as well.
So you’ll have to do a bit of research to find out which solution will save you the most. Vonage has posted a web tool to find the cost of calls to available countries, and you can visit Skype or other VoIP web sites for their international rates.
For a limited time, Vonage is offering a free 15 minute call to one of 100 countries using Time to Call. The app is free.
Well, it took long enough, but an iPad-specific version of Skype is now available for the iPad and iPad 2. And if have an iPad 2, you can finally make face-to-face video calls using the tablet’s front-facing camera.
Some features of Skype for iPad include contacts view, Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity, front-facing or rear-facing camera support for video chat, IM chat with emoticons, Skype Out calls to landlines and mobile phones (if subscribed), chat and call history, and more.
Skype for iPad is free and now available for download from the App Store.
When iOS 5 debuts this fall, Apple will also bring its promised iCloud service online. A user will get 5GB of storage free with his or her account, but there will also be an option to upgrade that storage if additional space is needed.
For a modest fee, of course…
$15 per year will get you an extra 10GB of storage for a total of 15GB; $40 a year buys an extra 20GB, and $100 will give you a total of 55GB.
The option to purchase more iCloud storage will be in the iOS 5 Settings menu.