One thing which is sure to get everybody’s attention is the word ‘free’. Be it a free gift or a free beer or even some free advice, it is lapped up very fast. Seth Godin has written an entire book on the concept.
Capitalizing on the same is ‘FREEKALL’, a Bangalore-based Cloud telephony startup. They have developed a service where a user can call any mobile or landline for free without using internet or installing any applications.
Founded by Yashas C Shekar, Vijayakumar Umaluti and Sandesh E, FREEKALL is being launched today and is open for public beta. To use the service, users have to call their number 080-67683693 after which the call will drop and they will receive a call back. They can answer the call and dial the number of the person they want to talk to, followed by the symbol #. Both calls will be bridged and users can talk freely.
The founders have been working on this concept from the last eight months. Apart from the co-founders, another team member Sabari Jagadisheen played a key role in developing the product. Yashas explains,
With the advent of smart phones, the era of telecommunication has changed horizons and communication has become almost free in developed countries with a number of service providers. But the problem in developing countries is that 95% of the population does not have access to either 3G or 4G which is almost a mandatory to make internet calls using Skype, Viber and other such applications.
In the public beta launch of FREEKALL, people can use three min/day without registering and once they register they get 12 min/day free. Users can register by visiting the website www.freekall.in or replying to their SMS template by filling the provided details. Once the beta is over, the 12 minutes/day cap will be released and users can talk for as long as they want for free.
What’s the catch?
Well as you know there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Though people don't have to pay for the calls and can even use the service without registering, they have to listen to a 10 second ad in every call about the latest offers by brands and receive offer coupons. This will help them keep it free and help them achieve the costs. After every two minutes, users will have to here advertisements in between the free calls.
FREEKALL has secured a seed round of Rs 10 Lakhs from Ranjit Cherickel, founding member of 88mph, an Africa-based accelerator program platform.