netTalk, a VoIP service provider, has released an app offering free calls to the U.S. and Canada on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. netTALK is known for its DUO product, a device that transforms your broadband internet connection into a phone line allowing you to use a traditional phone connected to your router or to your computer via USB to make phone calls, which was released earlier this year. The free netTALK app hit the App Store this week and works on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch running iOS 3.1 or higher.
The app’s full feature list is as follows:
- Free calling to the US and Canada
- Connectivity through WIFI/3G/Edge
- Record conversations
- Import your contacts from your phone
- Receive customized support through 611
- Dial 2663 for FREE conference calling bridge
- Free 411 Directory Assistance
- Integrated contacts from the phone
- Favorite Contacts
netTALK promises that low-cost international calling is coming soon. Users of the company’s DUO product will also be able to link their DUO phone number to the app in order to receive calls through it.
Using the app requires you to sign up for a free netTALK account – you’re directed to Safari to create it and you’ll receive an email with a verification link to activate your account. Once this is done, you can make free calls at will through the app. In-call options include speakerphone and mute as well as a call recording option. Recorded calls can be accessed within the app via the call history list in the Recents tab.
We tested netTALK briefly on our iPhone 4 and iPad on both Wi-Fi and 3G networks and the app works generally as expected though call quality wasn’t perfect. Note that calls made using the netTALK app will show up as “unknown” or an unidentifiable number through Caller ID on the receiving end.
We love seeing free services like this come to the App Store. Tango wowed us with its free video calling and CallCoin disappointed us with its shady surveys to earn credits to make “free” calls. So far, netTALK appears to be a very viable option for those who want to make free outgoing calls from an iOS device with no strings attached.