One of the things that could really make cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin very popular, would be if it could compete with, or even replace existing services because of cheaper rates. One of the services everyone in the world uses, is the ability to make phone calls, either through a landline, mobile subscription, over VoIP and by any other means necessary. Chiliphone is looking to become a major player in this market, and they use Bitcoin as its payment system.
Chiliphone : A Brief Overview
The major advantage offered by Chiliphone is the fact there is no additional software to be downloaded or installed, as users can make phone calls all around the world. All you need is a web browser, which is something everyone has access to in one way or another, and you are set to go. Do keep in mind you will need some Bitcoins though, or at least bits of bitcoin.
When visiting the Chiliphone webpage, users are prompted to enter a phone number, including the country code. One the phone number you are trying to reach has been entered, a QR code will appear on the screen which serves as your personal Bitcoin wallet address. Users will also know how much they are charged per minute of calling.
In order to make phone calls, users will need a headset or a microphone and speaker at their disposal. Most browsers will ask you to allow Chiliphone access to your microphone through the browser, so make sure to grant that permission.
Chiliphone : Very Cheap Rates for Landline and Mobile
I entered my own mobile phone number here in Belgium, and using Chilihone would cost me 0.138mBTC per minute, which translates to roughly 3.6 eurocents. When comparing this to rates provided by my mobile provider, using Chiliphone is roughly 70% cheaper. Do keep in mind my mobile provider is already one of the cheapest ones available in Belgium, which just goes to show how beneficial Chiliphone could be.
When comparing prices to my ISP, which also provides me with a landline for phone calls, things are about the same. My ISP charges me 0.10 euro/minute for calls to both mobile and landline phone numbers, and an addition 0.05 EUR per phone call I make. Chiliphone charges me 0.019 EUR to make a phone call to landlines, and 0.036 EUR for calls to mobile numbers. Very, very sharp prices offered by Chiliphone by the looks of it.
International calls seem to be incredibly cheap as well, especially when comparing it to popular services such as Skype. Even though there are plenty of alternatives out there when it comes to VoIP calling, such as Viber and Whatsapp, they all require both parties to install additional software, which is something Chiliphone does not. A major advantage in my opinion.
Phone calls to a US phone number will cost you 0.045mBTC per minute, which is roughly US$0,014. However, it seems phone calls to the United Kingdom are even cheaper, at the rate of 0.038mBTC (US$0.01199) per minute. Keep in mind these US$ values are based on the Bitcoin exchange rate at the time of writing, and might have changed by the time you read this article.
Chiliphone : Try Before You Buy
Before you decide on whether or not you want to make use of Chiliphone for very cheap (inter)national phone calls by paying in Bitcoin, make sure to test your setup to see if everything is working properly. An echo test service has been set up, which is free to call. You are able to test your microphone and speakers or headset both ways.
Chiliphone Is Not A Bitcoin Wallet
While users can deposit their Bitcoin in their Chiliphone BTC wallet, make sure to transfer back any unused bitcoins to your own wallet. All deposits remain associated with your browser for 30 days, after which they will be automatically returned to the wallet you sent the funds from. For those of you wanting to withdraw leftover funds immediately, make sure to check out the Redeem page.
How Does Chiliphone Actually Work?
All of the above sounds absolutely amazing, and from the user reports we have seen, the call quality is outstanding. Combine that with incredibly low costs for calling any phone number in the world, and you have a chicken with golden eggs. But how does it work? Chiliphone uses WebRTC for browser peer-to-peer audio communication.
Chiliphone Interview With the Creator
We will be contacting the creator of the Chiliphone platform, and conduct a written interview with him/her. If you have any questions you would like to see answered, leave them in the comments below, and we will make sure they get answered.
Website : http://chiliphone.com/