Even though mobile providers do offer select plans for international data and calling, making calls to other countries can still get pretty pricey.
While apps like WhatsApp, Viber, and Skype have given us the ability to message and call for free or at a reduced rate, they still require you to use a Wi-Fi connection or mobile data.
International calling app Rebtel recently released a new feature that allows users to make calls abroad for free, even if they don’t have access to Wi-Fi or cellular data.
Rebtel connects users to their system via a local call and can then transfer this call to any number in the world.
When both users have the app (which the company refers to as Rebel Calling), both users can be connected via a local call to shortcut the costs of international calling.
This way, the user gets free unlimited international calling with the same stability expected from a regular call.
Rebtel CEO Magnus Larsson started the company back in 2006 in an effort to build an international calling platform that offers consistency and reliability.
“The aim was to build this for a community of people who use international calling often,” Larsson told Business Insider. “It’s for those who are looking for quality and stability, rather than just the ability to make an international call.”
The Rebel Calling feature will be available for free until sometime next year, after which they plan to charge $1 per month for the service.
We tested out the app by making an international call to Ireland. Here’s what happened.
Next, you'll be asked if you'd like to allow the app access to your address book to add your contacts.
While testing the feature, I made sure to turn off both Wi-Fi and cellular data. After entering my contact's number, I was told to hold while the call connected. After a few seconds, we were both connected and able to hear one another clearly.
I found that the app is great for anyone who has been frustrated with the dropped calls that can happen when you're relying on Wi-Fi.
Plus, you don't have to worry about whether the other person is also connected to Wi-Fi. It's a useful calling tool not only for travellers, but also for expats or anyone who has international contacts they'd like to call.
The free calling feature is currently available in 56 countries and will continue to expand to other countries as well.
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