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Best Android Apps: 26 best apps for Android

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Aznog

Originally reviewed by Joe Roberts 29 January 2016

What is Aznog?

Anyone who has family or friends abroad will likely be very well acquainted with Skype. Although the service allows you to call landlines and mobiles directly, you have to buy credits to do so. Now a new Android-only app, Aznog, has taken things a step further by allowing free calls to landlines and mobiles in 19 different countries. Oh and it’s absolutely free.

As long as you have an internet connection, whether 3G, 4G, LTE or Wi-Fi, you can call anyone on their phone without them needing to have the app installed. Calls are currently limited to two minutes but you can call as many times as you want and the limit is set to increase soon. Could this be the start of free international calls for all?

What’s good?

After installing the app, you go through a quick validation process where you type in your number and receive a text, just like with Whatsapp. Then you’re free to use Aznog. It’s very quick and I had no issues installing and setting up the app.

I also never had a problem calling any number, and the app imports all of your contacts, as well as providing you with a number pad, to make calling easy and quick. The user interface is incredibly clean – too clean in fact, with the lack of a settings menu slightly disconcerting at first. But you’ll eventually find that you don’t really need anything more than the contacts list and dialler provided.

The great thing about Aznog, aside from the whole free calls thing, is that whoever you’re calling doesn’t need to have the app installed on their phone. When you dial a number, the person you’re calling will receive the call like it were a regular phone call. Not needing the app installed also means Aznog works with landlines.

AznogSS

Call quality can vary depending on your internet connection but as long as you have a decent Wi-Fi or 4G service, it's perfectly adequate. Even on 3G it’s tolerable, although travelling on a train proved too much for Aznog as the data connection strength changed rapidly and voices began to break up – which is to be expected.

I can also see Aznog coming in handy for those who live in areas where there’s poor reception. If your house or flat doesn’t get any service but you have Wi-Fi signal, having Aznog means you can still make calls directly to people’s phones.

This is the current list of countries in which Aznog works: United Kingdom, United States, Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Poland, Romania, Sweden, Spain, Singapore. You can make calls to and from any of these countries and the team behind Aznog have stated that the list will continually expand.

What’s bad?

The two-minute limit means phone calls are remarkably short, and until this increases Aznog is unlikely to be widely adopted as a genuine international calling alternative. That said, the developers are keen to emphasise that the limit will be increased in the near future, although they haven’t specified when. As soon as that happens, phone companies will start to worry about the app.

And if you're wondering how Aznog can possibly make money, there are ads which pop up after every phone call. They certainly aren't a major drawback however, as you can simply tap the 'X' to get rid of them and make another call.

Verdict

For those looking for an alternative to costly long-distance calling, or paying for Skype credits to contact friends and family abroad, Aznog is a good tool that could one day become essential. As soon as the two minute call limit is increased, Aznog could very well start to pilfer Skype users from Microsoft and have phone companies paying attention.

Score:
8/10 | Price: Free | In-app purchases? No | Download Aznog

Our Score

8/10

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