Gathan Beaga

gizmo, jajah, skype, and free calling

I go an email from the Gizmo Project today: Gizmo are an alternative to Skype, that many say is technically better (it certainly has a more open and standard compliant protocol, which means that it will work and interoperate with a lot more systems than Skype does). On the other hand, Gizmo is slightly more expensive to use the call in / call out features (about 4.4 New Zealand cents per minute to other NZ users, compared to Skype’s 3.4 cents)… and of course fewer people are subscribed, which makes it less of a draw. (There’s a great comparison article here.)

However… maybe all this is changing. The email explained that calls between Gizmo users, where the call terminated in the receiving user’s landline, are now free (with some limitations). So my call that used to cost 4.4 cents per minute won’t cost anything so long as the person I’m calling is also a signed up Gizmo user.

Now I just need to get more of my friends and relatives using Gizmo.

Or do I?

In surfing the net for all sorts of VOIP stuff I came across Jajah, which has one of the simplest concepts ever. It’s like Gizmo and Skype, using the Internet for calls, but you don’t need to download anything. You simply place the call on their website by telling Jajah the number of the person you want to call. Shortly, your landline will ring: pick it up and you’ll be put through to the other person’s landline. Once they pick up their incoming call you are connected.

No PC required, just access to the web page; no fussing with attachments to the PC, headsets, or special microphones. Better yet, these guys have also dropped their prices to nil for calls between members as well (again, with some limitations).

I’d like to say that the quality of all these services is great… but in truth Skype is the only one I’ve actually made any calls on. I’ll be giving Jajah and Gizmo a go as soon as I can convince some of my rellies to register.

Viral marketing strikes again. Maybe.