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By 6 May 2010 | Categories: news

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First National Bank’s (FNB) ‘Connect Talk’ Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) application is now available for free on the South African Apple Application (App) Store.
 
According to FNB this is the first South African app to become available on the Apple App Store. Owners of the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad will now be able to make local as well as international calls at reduced rates. FNB ‘Connect Talk’ is a pre-paid system offering call rates from 33c to 49c per minute for local calls, 25c per minute for international calls and 99c per minute to any South African mobile number when making calls via an internet connection. Currently FNB Connect is offering R10 free airtime to call any number, at anytime for new registrations only. There is no charge to sign up for the service, users simply pay for minutes they use, which they can purchase through setting up a non-transactional account online via FNB Connect. This account can be linked to a regular bank account to transfer money to when needed. 
 
“Calls can be made from a computer or compatible cellphone, or even from a landline if plugged into a VoIP-enabled router,” explained FNB Connect CEO, Luis Simoes. “As it’s a pay-as-you-go service we have an online call calculator so call costs can be determined before calls are made. Furthermore, live usage and billing statistics can be seen at anytime instead of waiting for month end to get the bill. And if users have a Wi-Fi enabled cellphone they can use this internationally and don’t have to sign up for expensive roaming with their cellphone service provider. In addition FNB Connect users can also get free ‘Connect Talk’ access at selected Wi-Fi hotspots.”

It remains to be seen how will this service will do, since the South African network operators are not particularly keen to run voice over their data network.  

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