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VoIP, unified messaging, products and services
Network World - Vonage has been working to incorporate and extend mobility, allowing customers to use Vonage's calling plans from their mobile phones with a new service called Extensions. In a related move, Vonage has launched Time to Call as an iPhones app. Vonage also recently partnered with TracFone Wireless to offer home phone service to TracFone's prepaid mobile customer base.
The Vonage Extensions service is designed to work with any mobile phone with downloadable apps for iPhone and Android devices, enabling one-touch dialing directly from the customer's contact list. The service allows customers to use Vonage's unlimited international calling plans from their mobile phones. The new service offering is free to all Vonage customers who can add any U.S. phone number as an extension by logging into their online account. The extension phone number can be a cellphone, a home phone or even an office number. Once registered, the service works like a virtual calling card.
Commenting in a statement on the offer, Marc Lefar, CEO of Vonage, said, "Vonage World set the benchmark for unlimited international calling. Now new and existing customers can call these unlimited countries on their mobile phones for no additional cost ... dramatically [increasing] the value of Vonage's core offering ... when making international calls."
In a related move, Vonage has launch a pay-per-call international app for iPhone, with direct payment through the iTunes app, letting consumers make 15-minute international calls. Once the app is installed, customers can touch the "Buy" button, enter their iTunes credentials, then make the call either from their address book or with direct dialing. Fifteen-minute calls to 100 countries range from $0.99 to $1.99; more than 90 additional countries can be called for flat rates ranging up to $9.99. Time to Call users do not have to be Vonage home phone service subscribers.
And in a third move related to mobile customers, Vonage has signed a distribution agreement with TracFone, offering TracFone's prepaid wireless customers unlimited local and domestic long-distance phone service at home through Vonage. With the agreement TracFone customers will receive unique offers for the Vonage U.S. & Canada Unlimited calling plan.
Read more about voip & convergence in Network World's VoIP & Convergence section.
Steve Taylor is president of Distributed Networking Associates and publisher/editor-in-chief of Webtorials. Larry Hettick, an independent analyst and consultant, is a 30-year industry veteran. He has covered VoIP and UC at Network World for 12 years.