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Facebook brings free VoIP calling to flagship app in update

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
In an update to Facebook's flagship iOS app rolled out on Friday, the social networking monolith ported over free VoIP calling first seen in the Facebook Messenger app, though initial availability limited to the U.S. and Canada.

Facebook CoIP


First introduced as an update to Messenger for iOS in January, which itself brought recorded voice message capabilities, the VoIP calling feature was limited to a Canadian beta. The service went live in the U.S. two weeks later, but remained as a Messenger-only feature.

With Friday's update, users who prefer to stick with the flagship Facebook app can now access VoIP calling to friends who have also downloaded the newest software version.

Placing calls is identical to the Messenger implementation. iPhone users swipe right on the main Facebook app page to reveal a list of friends with which they would like to speak. Navigating to the "i" button found at the top of every chat window now shows a "Free Call" button that will be shown in color if the friend's device supports the feature, or grey if it does not. It should be noted that VoIP calling uses data when on a cellular network.

Along with the VoIP calling, a few minor changes were made to Facebook's app:
  • New button design makes it easy to like, comment and share posts in News Feed

  • Improved buttons to like, comment and share posts

  • Share button to re-post stories from your News Feed now available in all languages

  • Call friends for free right from Facebook (US and Canada)

The universal Facebook for iOS app can be found on the App Store as a free 22.7MB download.
post #2 of 12

If they make this available for companies, can it replace 1-800 numbers?

post #3 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by ankleskater View Post

If they make this available for companies, can it replace 1-800 numbers?


That might be friggin brilliant.

post #4 of 12
I really really hope this pressures/speeds up Apple into releasing their free "voip" iMessages/factime whatever it's going to be. You know it's only a matter of time, the writing is all over the all. They give you imessages, they give you facetime... all they need to do is take the video chat away and do a little magic and BAM! I'll stay w/ my 100 minutes "unlimited" 5gb of 4g then 2g/3g on tmobile thank you very much fro $30.
post #5 of 12
Originally Posted by drewyboy View Post
I really really hope this pressures/speeds up Apple into releasing their free "voip" iMessages/factime whatever it's going to be.

 

Since when is this expected?


You know it's only a matter of time, the writing is all over the all…

 

It's not…


…and BAM…

 

…the carriers block Apple from doing this, rendering the service completely useless. And decrease their monthly data to 1GB as punishment.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply
post #6 of 12

If you can't see the price tag you aren't the customer, you're the product that's being sold.

 

Having said that I don't see Facebook's money-making angle on VOIP. Surely they can already tell your "real" friends from your acquaintances and they aren't likely to learn much new by "listening in" on your calls for key words.

post #7 of 12

I have about 155 "friends" on Facebook, none of which I'll ever call through the app.  My real friends (real world and who I'm linked to on Facebook) have my contact info and we communicate through other methods, never through FB.  Text, Facetime, or (gasp) phone call.

 

I can't see what FB's angle is here unless they're just trying to make sure you get so entrenched into FB that you can't get out.  

 

FWIW, I deactivated my FB account for 4 weeks, the peace and quiet was wonderful.  Reactivated last week and instantly regret it, the same people STILL complaining about the same things.  Next time I deactivate, it'll be deleted completely. (I only reactivated because my Spotify account is through my FB login and I missed Spotify).

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by allenbf View Post

FWIW, I deactivated my FB account for 4 weeks, the peace and quiet was wonderful.  Reactivated last week and instantly regret it, the same people STILL complaining about the same things.  Next time I deactivate, it'll be deleted completely.

 

I deactivated my FB account a couple of months ago too but they don't let you delete the account and your data, it is just made inactive and you can reactivate it again by simply login in. I would have liked to be able to delete all my data from Facebook.

post #9 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Evoken View Post

 

I deactivated my FB account a couple of months ago too but they don't let you delete the account and your data, it is just made inactive and you can reactivate it again by simply login in. I would have liked to be able to delete all my data from Facebook.


That is not completely true.

post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post


That is not completely true.

 

Agreed

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evoken View Post

 

I deactivated my FB account a couple of months ago too but they don't let you delete the account and your data, it is just made inactive and you can reactivate it again by simply login in. I would have liked to be able to delete all my data from Facebook.

 

 

You can delete your account completely.  And you can download all of your account data before doing so.

post #11 of 12
Of the plethora of free VoIP applications available, why would anyone choose Facebook?
post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcode View Post

Of the plethora of free VoIP applications available, why would anyone choose Facebook?

Convenience probably and as someone else mentioned it becomes more entrenched in your daily life so you are more reluctant to leave. As social networking has become an important part of daily life for some people they need to differentiate themselves for the advertisers. They may have some ulterior motive but I don't know what else they would gain. They already have everyone's info.
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