Vonage Mobile app undercuts Skype in calling
VoIP provider Vonage has just released a new Vonage Mobile app that will allow for free calling and texting between users who have it installed on their smartphones, as well as discounted calling rates to those who don't. It uses Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G data networks and is now available for iOS (free, iTunes) and Android (free, Android Market) devices. The app is meant for frequent travelers, or those who have friends or family abroad and want to use their phones to contact them.
Available to subscribers with international plans
Vonage has released an app (free, Android Market) for making long-distance calls from Android phones. The VoIP services provider's Extensions app enables subscribers with Android-based cell phones to make calls throughout the world without incurring international charges from their wireless carrier. Calls are still subject to the call rates under a Vonage subscriber's plan.
Vonage Time to Call uses iTunes to buy call time
Vonage staked out a first on Wednesday with an iPhone voice over IP app that uses in-app purchases. Time to Call (free, App Store) can make calls to real-world numbers by buying calls in blocks of 15 minutes. Prices range from 99 cents to $2 for about 100 common countries and peak at $10 for 90 more difficult to reach countries. As iTunes handles the infrastructure, users don't have to be Vonage subscribers and can pay with whatever they already use on Apple's store.
New service available for $55/month
Vonage has expanded its range of VoIP services with a new plan that allows users to take advantage of unlimited international calling to mobile phones. The plan, which carries the label World Premium Unlimited, currently extends to 42 different countries such as China, France, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Spain, and the UK, among others.
Vonage launches Mobile app for Facebook calling
VoIP service provider Vonage on Wednesday announced it has released a free Vonage Mobile app for Facebook. The app will let users who have it make free cellphone calls to each other, anywhere in the world. The calls can be made directly from the friends list and with a single touch.
Vonage plans iPad app, video calling, more
VoIP provider Vonage will rely on digital tablet devices such as Apple's iPad to help it get back into profitability, according to company CEO Marc Lefar. The company has an app planned for the tablet and has the ability to video and messaging to its service. At the same time, Lefar mentioned that a software or phone company may want to partner with Vonage to access its technology, but did not say whether a partnership or acquisition are indeed being discussed.
Vonage Mobile Android Wi-Fi only for now
Vonage wrapped up its week by giving AT&T and T-Mobile special access to Vonage for Android. The VoIP app will let phones on either network make free US-wide calls over and lower-cost international calls, though only over Wi-Fi. It should support both a regular Vonage subscription as well as pay-per-use that should theoretically still be less expensive than regular phone service.
iPhone app ties into AT&T plans
Vonage plans to release iPhone and BlackBerry applications on Monday afternoon Eastern time, Reuters says. The apps should make Vonage's VoIP service portable on any American BlackBerry or iPhone. Unlike most VoIP offerings however, the apps do not attempt to provide free calling. They instead provide cheaper rates, in some cases more than 50 percent below normal carrier fees, according to Vonage.
Apple Yes to Vonage iPhone
Vonage today said that Apple has approved its iPhone VoIP app. The company doesn't have details of when it expects the software to reach the App Store but says it's already conducting a beta test of the software. It's expected that Internet calling will only work over Wi-Fi, however, due to policies from AT&T and some other carriers that bar VoIP on 3G due to lag and other claimed quality issues.
Vonage app halted
Apple claims a recently submitted Vonage VoIP application has been delayed due to technical difficulties with the Vonage software, according to Barron's. An Apple spokesperson said there were technical issues with the code Vonage submitted, but did not elaborate on the problems; however, Vonage issued a response to Apple's statement, saying the 'technical problems' were purely cosmetic in nature--related to the labeling of an icon. Vonage also noted that the company has resubmitted the application with the appropriate adjustments.
Vonage Companion ships
Vonage has launched Vonage Companion for the Mac, allowing Mac users to access their Vonage number from a Mac while on the go. The Companion software can utilize a computer's built-in speakers and microphone, with a range of services including conference calling, call recording and call blocking. Using Vonage on a notebook when traveling is free in the US and costs $.01 per minute internationally.
VONaLink update for VoIP
Arcosoft recently announced an update for VONaLink ScreenPop, its VoIP service enhancement software, adding outbound dialing restrictions. VONaLink ScreenPop works with any SIP compatible VoIP phone system, including Vonage and Asterisk. By hooking a computer that hosts the software to a hub, users can monitor and manage outgoing calls, preventing undesired charges and fees from unauthorized phone calls. Arcosoft is selling VONaLink ScreenPop on its website for $30, with a free demo version also available.
Vonage CES 2008 offerings
Vonage today unveiled its new MyVonage product strategy, which includes the new V-Portal device – a single port digital voice adapter and router. A built-in LCD helps users to install and troubleshoot the device, as well as show caller ID, call timing and logging information, with easy access to Vonage’s service numbers. The device also handles advanced features, such as group calling and voice-activated dialing. New customers can purchase the box for $10; an instant rebate brings the price down from $80, while users are still required to pay a $10 shipping charge, and a $30 activation fee.
Vonage, Nortel settle spat
Canada's Nortel is the latest to settle a patent dispute with VoIP carrier Vonage, Reuters reports. Unlike the company's recent legal problems, however, Vonage was in this case the originator, having inherited a 2004 lawsuit when it bought Digital Packet Licensing in 2006; in question were patents relating to 411 and 911 services, along with so-called "click-to-call" technology. Nortel filed a counterclaim earlier this month, which may have been the trigger for the settlement.
Crucially for Vonage, which has been in serious financial jeopardy for several months, the agreement will require no cash damage payments. Instead, each side will let the other license three of its patents in a limited arrangement.
Vonage and AT&T Settlement
Vonage and AT&T late yesterday announced that they have settled a dispute between the two over alleged patent infringement by the former's voice-over-IP (VoIP) service. Although both companies have declined to provide exact details of the agreement, the deal comes several weeks after the two had agreed in principle to end litigation that accused Vonage of infringing on patents for connecting phone service to Internet systems.