We all love to get the lowest cost possible when making calls, especially to other countries. For carriers to offer us their lowest price, they need to be able to secure least cost routing of all communications. Even with a clear strategy in place, however, international travelers relying on their smartphones for communications can still find their international per-minute billing rates to be a little beyond budgetary limits.
The good news, according to this The Voice Report piece, smartphone users are discovering new options every day for saving money on international mobile phone bills, and for extending PBX (News - Alert) dial plans and features to mobile devices. International long-distance and roaming costs are getting cut down a notch or two by hosted services from carriers such as Geos Communications and Verizon (News - Alert) Business.
Additional efforts for least cost routing have been employed by Research In Motion, which sanctioned lower-cost VoIP over WiFi (News - Alert) phone calls with its Mobile Voice System 5 Platform, which is based entirely on the RIM BlackBerry Enterprise Server. This RIM platform has been integrated with Cisco Unified Communications (News - Alert) Manager PBXs so that UCM features appear in native form on BlackBerry handsets.
Verizon offers an innovative method as an alternative to least cost routing. Rather than handing calls off between WiFi and cellular networks – as most FMC products and services tend to do – turns user-initiated calls into received calls, which are less expensive than originated calls in Europe. When the user makes the call, Verizon’s global VoIP infrastructure receives a signal from software on the phone so that Verizon’s VoIP infrastructure will call the user back. The call is then billed as a received call instead of an initiated call, which produces half to two-thirds in savings.
The company anticipates that they will be adding a North American version of the service in the next year. Until then U.S.-based multinational companies can take advantage of the service in countries such as Ireland, Italy, France, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
The least cost routing alternative service from Geos is the MyGlobalTalk Roam Often Virtually Everywhere (ROVE), which is set to launch the first of July. This service works in the traditional manner in which it transitions mobile devices back and forth between cellular and WiFi networks. The company has partnered with FMC equipment-maker Agito Networks (News - Alert) to deliver this cloud-based PBX service that will mirror least cost routing options for those seeking to make inexpensive calls internationally.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jaclyn Allard