I’m writing this blog post from a secluded and fairly remote part of Michigan. Right next to Lake Michigan in a rustic lake house, I feel connected to my family and the good book I’m reading – but peacefully far removed from work and my usual concerns. Yet, none of us can really afford to disconnect entirely these days. Being within reach – by electronic means – has become almost essential. Out here by the lake – where a one-bar signal seems to be the best my cell phone can get – I have discovered a great way to stay connected. And it’s free. Even if I had left the country (and in some ways, I feel I have), I could call or text another Viber user back in the U.S. for free.
We’ve all heard stories about people who went on vacations outside the U.S. and had sticker shock when they returned. With Viber, you won’t come crashing down from that post-vacation high when you get an exorbitant bill.
I’m surprised I haven’t known about Viber until now. The service has 200 million users. (Make that 200 million plus one.) You can easily and quickly connect over a 3G or WiFi network with anyone else who’s a Viber user. And those connections include voice, video calls, photo sharing and texting – basically all the ways we connect virtually today.
Whether you use an iPhone, Droid, BlackBerry, Windows phone or desktop app, Viber should work for you. There’s no registration, and you won’t have to worry about memorizing another password.
What I love about Viber, besides the fact that calls from one Viber user to another are free (and that’s an outstanding value!) is that there are no pesky ads to contend with. I like the app so much that I decided to learn a little about the company. Viber currently has no revenue; they’re funded by individual investors. They’ll make their money, I figure, when they sell themselves eventually.
Laptop magazine gave Viber its editor’s choice award. The magazine cites its quick and easy set-up, the sound quality, the fact that users keep their own phone number when they sign up for the service and the cost. (Did I mention it’s free?) The magazine says it “tops our list of messaging platforms.”
I’m not a paid spokesperson for Viber, although I realize my zeal may make me sound like one. I’m just excited to have discovered it – right when I needed it – and to share my discovery with you.
This summer, I hope you all find your own way to escape. And I hope you manage to also stay connected to those – in your office or at home – who need you.
Now, back to my book in my favorite easy chair in a great little house by the lake….