A new bot called Callcoin allows users to use the Telegram messaging app to make cheap international phone calls, paying only with bitcoin and recharge codes.
Communicating to CCN.com, Callcoin said its international phone rates are 10 times cheaper than standard rates. 120 minutes, a group of Latvian-Canadian developers, created Callcoin.
Callcoin uses callback rather than Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), a feature which the company claims provides higher quality telephony than other call services.
A Callcoin call from Canada to France gets charged 4 euro cents per minute, compared to 10 to 20 euro cents from standard call services. A call from the United States to Italy will incur a 5- to 6-euro-cent charge per minute; a call from Mexico to Spain incurs a 3-euro-cent-per-minute charge.
Incoming calls to Australia incur 2- to 4-euro-cent-per-minute charges.
Telegram users simply enter “@callcoinbot” in the Telegram search box. They can then select their language, English or Russian. They then type in their current phone number for callbacks our use the “insert your number” button.
To make a call, the user taps the attachment icon or types in the number they want to call if it is not in their existing contacts. They then tap “contact” from a popup menu. They choose the contact they wish to call and tap it to make the call.
The website explains how to sign up for Callcoin, how to make calls, top up, send credit, use codes and set caller IDs.
A user can check their Callcoin credit, review tariffs, view their history, set a caller ID, rent a different phone number, and set multiple call-back numbers.
The Callcoin website allows users to check outgoing and incoming call rates to different countries. The rates are shown in euros.
Callcoin accepts bitcoin payments through the BitGo bitcoin wallet. The user does not have to register with their own phone number to use the bot.
Anyone can create recharge codes to send to other users.
Also read: Telebit, the Telegram bitcoin wallet
The developers intend to connect around 100,000 users to the bot in the first year. They also plan to expand its functionality.
“Callcoin is the first Telegram bot that provides call services and the first service that offers a winning solution with payments in cryptocurrency,” said Dmitry Chuyenko, CEO of 120 minutes and creator of Callcoin.
120 minutes was recently founded by a team of developers with 20 years of telecommunications experience.
Nick Ustinov, ex-founder of Roamer app, a Baltics email service and the owner of the Lokalise.co translation platform for software developers, supports Callcoin.
Images from Shutterstock.