Innovation That Matters

From Norway, easy SIM card add-on offers cheap international calls

Travel & Tourism

Interfone is offering a small add-on for any SIM card that enables international callers to get inexpensive call rates without switching their current provider.

We’ve already seen the Micromax X395 Convertible handset enable cell phone owners in India to take advantage of dual tariffs. Now Norwegian telecoms firm Interfone is offering a SIM card add-on that enables international callers to easily access cheap rates without switching their current provider. Users signing up for the service receive an ultra-thin SIM chip, which is installed by sliding it on top of the SIM in their current handset. When a call is then made to a location outside of Norway, the SIM chip is activated and Interfone’s pricing plan kicks in. For each international call, users pay their standard domestic rate, plus Interfone’s charge. For consumers with an allocation of free domestic calls on their standard tariff, they could end up simply paying the Interfone charge for the call. According to the company, this works out 20 to 97 percent cheaper than other options such as VoIP and 3G internet calls. Interfone hopes that its technology will help consumers bypass the more expensive charges imposed by bigger telecoms companies, much like the Open Garden app does for mobile broadband. Could this innovation disrupt existing expensive pricing schemes?



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