Viber: Free International Calling and Text
As most of you know, cell phone companies charge for everything. The costs can be quite high if you are traveling outside your country. I know we just took a trip to the UK and paid AT&T $30 for 30 minutes of call time and $10 for 50 texts.
Normally, those minutes are far below our usage, but we paid attention and didn’t go over. These fees were per month with a minimum 30 days, so even though we were only gone 7 days, we had to pay for the whole month. At the time, it seemed to be money well spent.
Now, we have found a better way to make international calls and to text for free. It is a free and simple app for iPhones, iPads, and Android smartphones called Viber. You can also go online and download it to your PC and Mac.
I wish we had known about Viber before we traveled abroad.
How to Get Viber
- Go to your app icon on your phone or iPad.
- Tap “search”
- Type in “viber” – several different versions of the search will appear
- Just choose “viber”
- The application will open so you can scroll through and see what it does.
- It will say "Free" next to the app - tap it
- “Install” will appear, and you will need to tap it.
- Once you do, you will be asked for your iTunes password on iPhone or iPad.
- After you have installed it, you need to set it up.
How to Set Up Viber
When I downloaded Viber, I did not realize you had to set it up. I felt really stupid. Of course, today, it seems like technology is so advanced that I assumed once downloaded that it automatically worked. A call from my son, who is overseas, to his dad, who set up Viber correctly, clued me in on what needed to be done.
- Go to your new Viber app and open it.
- You will need to fill in your smartphone number, which becomes your Viber identity.
- A screen should pop up for you to get an access code. If it does not, there is an option to tap so Viber calls you with your access number.
- Enter your access number
If you do not see the Wi-Fi symbol on your phone or iPad, you may be charged for texts and calls. Be sure you are on Wi-Fi when using Viber.
How Viber Works
When you want to text or call someone, you have to open the Viber app, tap on a contact (the contact must be using Viber, too), then choose to text or call. You must have a Wi-Fi connection, or you could be charged for data and calling usage.
As I stated, Viber is for free international calling and texting but for some reason when you click on your Viber contact, in the middle of the screen it has “Text Message” and “Favorites,” which immediately drew my eye. Ignore the white rectangle with “Text Message” in it. Go to the top and tap on one of the purple rectangles that gives you the choice between “Free Call” and “Free Text.” Voila! You are either talking or texting for free from one country to another.
Viber Text Functions
Many of us like to share photos, videos, and emoticons. Once you have chosen a Viper contact to text, tap the “+” sign next to your text box. Underneath on the screen, a picture will pop up to add a picture or video – very much like sharing on regular text.
If you swipe to the left, some cool graphic messages are displayed that you can use in your text.
If you swipe to the right, there is a selection of emoticons you can insert into your text.
When you look at the text history, it will show when your contact was last on Viber.
A Tip for Viber Users
Before calling your Viber friend, send a text. If you call while the other Viber user is not using WiFi, overage charges may be the result for the person you are calling.
Viber Incoming Call and Text Sounds
Just like your normal smart phone use, your phone will ring when you are receiving a Viber call. The sound quality of the call is just as clear as your normal calls.
When you receive a text, you will hear a sound notification.
Just as your phone shows that you have a text or a call, your Viber icon also shows when you have received a message or a call.
Once, when my son and husband were talking, the call was dropped. When my son tried to call back, it did not ring on my husband’s end. My son then called me, and it came through. I think this is a minor problem when considering that Viber is providing free international calling and text.
Plus, it may not be a Viber problem at all. It could have been the area my son was calling from or our area. I mean, really, how many of us have not had this issue before on our cell phones?
Viber is the Way to Go for Free International Calling and Text
If you have friends and relatives around the world, Viber has made it easy and free to stay in touch. Those of us who are military families are very fortunate to have such a great app while our service member is deployed. Plus, now you don't have to pay those cell phone fees when you are traveling around the globe. It is a win-win for all.
Enjoy visiting with your friends and family, and remember, you must be using Wi-Fi when you call or send a text.
Awesome Viber Review
© 2013 Susan Holland