LINE Corporation, the company that owns and operates messaging app LINE, announced a new calling service that allows anyone that has the app installed on their Android device to make cheap calls to landline and cellphones. The new service called LINE Call is initially available in 8 countries Japan, United States, Mexico, Peru, Columbia, Thailand, Philippines, and Spain, with other countries expected to gain access to the service “once tests for call quality have been passed.”
Consumers that have the latest version of the app installed on their Android devices (iOS to follow shortly) and have a registered number on their account are now able to use LINE Call without any further setup. This latest service offers clear high quality calls to local or international landlines or mobile phones at a low cost.
According to Jeanie Han, Chief Executive Officer, LINE Euro-Americas Corp “The ability to make calls directly to mobile and landline phones has been one of our most requested features, and we are proud to be able to provide LINE customers a more seamless and fun experience on our app while engaging those closest to them. With each new platform development and service, we are able to improve our platform to strengthen our positioning as an ‘all-in-one’ communication app.”
The key features of this new service include
- Call mobile phones and landlines using LINE Call. Calls between LINE users are still free.
- No Initial Costs, Monthly Subscription Fees, or Connection Charges
- Use your existing phone number
- Make high quality calls using superior codec and a premium network
LINE Call expands on the company’s services which initially offered free VoIP and voice calls to other LINE users. It is meant to be an alternative to a prepaid subscription and offers a 30 day subscription service or a pay as you go service. Consumers in the US, Mexico, Peru, Spain, and China only have to pay 2 cents a minute for landline calls. In the Philippines landline calls costs 12 cents a minute. Mobile calls on the other hand range from 4 cents to 15 cents a minute.
LINE Call was first announced last February but only activated by the company today. With its entry it now competes against Skype and Google in making voice calls without consuming the consumer’s voice minutes.
LINE has more than 370 million global users as of February of this year however the company did not specify how many are active on a monthly basis. Revenues of the company stood at $156 million last quarter with $120 million coming from the LINE messaging app.