Smartphones.

Free Internet Phone Apps to Use

Studying abroad in Japan is an exciting, life-changing experience. You’ll get to experience a new culture and learn a different language. But being away from family and friends for weeks and even months can be difficult. Staying connected with people back home is always a good start to making an adjustment to your new environment. One of the best ways to keep in touch is by calls using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), also called IP telephony. VoIP is a method and group of technologies for the delivery of multimedia sessions and voice communications over Internet Protocol (IP) networks, such as the Internet.

People using digital devices.

There are several free phone call applications that are available in four different forms:

Digital devices. | Melinda * Young

PC to phone – programs that allow free calls from your computer (laptop or desktop) to an actual telephone number whether a cellular phone or landline. You don’t need an actual phone to have a conversation.

App to phone – these types of software enable the user to make free internet calls from a mobile device to any active phone number whether to landlines or mobile phones that aren’t using the app.

PC to PC – this application makes calling available from any computer (laptop or desktop) to another computer.

App to app – these services can only be used entirely on smartphones or tablets. The phone calls can only be made if the recipient has the same application installed in their device. Phone calls to landlines of other mobile phones that do not have the software installed inhibits the service.

Laptop, tablet, smartphone.

WhatsApp

WhatsApp is a VoIP service owned by Facebook, Inc. It allows users to send text messages and voice messages, make video and voice calls, share documents, images, locations and other types of media.

Laptop, tablet, smartphone. | miniyo73

WhatsApp can be used on mobile devices, and computers, Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows, and Mac, while connected to the Internet using the app. The service requires users to provide a standard cellular mobile number for registering with the service.  Upon installing the app, you can see which ones in your contact list are also using WhatsApp, and be able to call them for free, no matter where in the world they’re located.

TextNow

TextNow is a mobile app that allows the user to send and receive free phone calls with other users. TextNow app lets users text any phone because of the actual number given to anyone who registers. To make actual phone calls to non TextNow users, such as calls to landline phones, you’ll need to earn or purchase redeemable credits. TextNow also allows for sending of photos, emoticons, drawings as well as your location. Other added features include voicemail, email alerts, customizable themes and adding your own signature to all your messages. TextNow requires an email address to make it work on devices that doesn’t have a phone number such as an iPad and Kindle. If you’re using TextNow on Windows, Mac or from the web, you can both call and text from your computer. The app is available for download for Android, Windows Phone, iPhone, iPad, Windows, and Mac.

Smartphones.

Google Duo

Google Duo is another video chat mobile app developed by Google.

Smartphones. | Sam Churchill

It’s available on the Android, iOS operating systems and Google’s Chrome browser on desktop and laptop computers.   It can be used for audio calls only or for free video calls.  Google Duo enables users to make high definitions video calls from your contact list and switches between Wi-Fi and cellular networks. Google Duo app allows you to connect with other Duo users only.