Jonathan Jensen on Thursday – DeFi Mobile launches Global Access

Yesterday I met with Jeff Rice the CEO of DeFi Mobile to discuss the launch of DeFi Global Access. DeFi offers carrier grade VoIP via your mobile handset with flat rate subscription pricing.

What really struck me about DeFi is that in a single service it addresses a number of the gaps in existing VoIP propositions – simple user experience, call expenditure predictability, all inclusive pricing and worldwide in-country numbers.

You keep your existing mobile phone, mobile number and SIM card and use DeFi when in range of a WiFi access point to make calls out of your flat rate package. DeFi is currently compatible with Nokia S60 WiFi handsets with more platform compatibility on the way – BlackBerry, iPhone and Windows Mobile. Installation is via a simple SMS download that auto configures the handset with your personal DeFi settings. The only thing you need to change on your existing mobile service is to downgrade the package to a cheaper one because you won’t need to make as many calls using it! As well as using your home and office WiFi you have automatic access to over 50 global WiFi networks in more than 75 countries included in the monthly service charge. The hotspot network also provides email and Internet access via your handset. Any calls that DeFi cannot include in the flat rate subscription, like premium rate calls, are barred, to maintain the simple tariff.

The proposition is aimed both at mobile roamers who are fed up receiving extortionate bills after overseas trips and regular mobile users who just make lots of calls. Current customers include both consumers and businesses that are looking to reduce their mobile bills.

Quick summary of the key features:
• Single flat rate tariff for all calls worldwide – wherever you are your calls are included in your monthly service charge
• Geographic number for inbound calls in your home country
• Full inbound and outbound CLI
• Call forwarding to your GSM/3G number when out of WiFi coverage
• Voicemail–to-email service with handset message alert
• Service and account management via the web

What does it cost? In the UK the DeFi Global Access monthly subscription charge is £25 (US$ equivalent) per month. The only additional charge is for upgrading to Global Access+ which gives you three geographic numbers in the countries of your choice for an additional £5 per month. Global Access+ is great if you have friends or colleagues in other countries and want to give them a cheap local number to call you on.

DeFi has invested time and money in building a carrier grade platform with the call quality and reliability you’d expect from a serious player and I’ll be checking this out when I test the service.

My DeFi account will be up and running shortly and I’ll be writing a full review on my experiences using the service.

Jonathan’s also at Sevendotzero.

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