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Fring VoIP Client Hits App Store

Gordon Kelly


Fring VoIP Client Hits App Store

It's not quite the unbridled version that appeared on jailbroken iPhones some time back, but VoIP software Fring is here at last in an official capacity that even ever-picky Apple can stomach...

For the uninitiated (though you have no excuse to be at this stage) Fring in its purest form is akin to mobile Skype with knobs on. It offers free calling to other Fring users, the ability to call standard land line and cellular numbers using SIP or SkypeOut and incorporates a nifty instant messaging client which is compatible with Skype, MSN, Google Talk, ICQ, Twitter, Yahoo! and AIM - basically everything.

So what do we get in the App Store-d version? Sadly not quite the full package. For example, while all call functionality is in there, calls can only be made over WiFi - yep this is a deal to protect the networks. Furthermore, and this is something of a killer for the IM client (and in fact any IM client until Apple's much delayed and deadline missing Push service takes off), it cannot run in the background so you will only be logged on while you are using the app. Check your email, you're disconnected, look up a number: disconnected, etc.

That said, Fring will work on both the iPhone and new iPod touch (when using earphones with an integrated mic) and it is a slick piece of software. Some early bugs have been reported in v1.0 (notably registering email addresses with full stops in them before the @ symbol) but these will no doubt be sorted out quick sharp. Furthermore once the Push service does launch, Fring - and apps like it - will really come into their own.

Perhaps best of all however is Fring is free, so you've nothing to lose by checking it out...


Fring Announcement (with video)


October 7, 2008, 4:49 pm

Quote:when using earphones with an integrated mic

Is this true you can use a mic with the touch? I didn't think it had the ability to use a mic..Cool, that means with Skype it becomes almost a phone in some areas with a wifi contract such as cloud at &#1634 a month...


October 7, 2008, 5:30 pm

Yep, you can, although I think its only the second (current) generation of Ipod touches that support the headphones/microphone, I dont think the 1st gen ipod touch supports it.

Seems strange that you cant run the app in the background, so you have to know for certain that the person receiveing the call (if they are on an iphone as well) has the app open?


October 7, 2008, 5:55 pm

Yep, 2nd gen touch only - and yes it is strange it can't run in the background but Apple currently (and famously) forbids any 3rd party app from running in the background to avoid it slowing down the phone's performance.

Push alerts will fix this, but they have already missed their deadline.


October 7, 2008, 5:56 pm

Maybe you can send chat messages though and they will get them when they open the app.. I have downloaded it onto my touch (2nd gen).


October 7, 2008, 6:23 pm

It's not just 3rd party applications. I don't believe any applications on the iPhone/iPod Touch truly multi-task properly in the background. The Safari web browser, as good as it is, doesn't keep web pages open and refreshed if you move to another application.

I downloaded Fring over the weekend, though not aware that it was new. I only use it to log into MSN but was disappointed that you need to keep it open to receive alerts. Still, it's better than nothing.


October 7, 2008, 7:20 pm

Just grabbed this one - not a bad little app. Shame it doesn't connect to Windows Live though. I hate seeing all of the names my contacts have entered. I'd rather it displayed the nicknames I'd given them.


October 9, 2008, 12:06 am

Fring is great, it runs in the background on my Nokia e51 and works superbly, including for Skype Out calls. Unfortunately, Apple iPhone doesnt allow it to run in teh background, which is one of Fring's best qualities...I can switch from my 'home' screen and answer normal cellular calls and send/receives smses, and use my other apps on the phone whilst keeping Fring open in the background and out of sight incase any one of my contacts wishes to contact me via skype or msn. Apple surely needs to fix this for their next gen iPhone.


October 10, 2008, 7:27 am

Currently as released, the mic is capable because the hole-plug on the Touch has 3 spacers, instead of 2 spacers with the 1st gen iPod Touch.

Still one need to get Apple earphones with remote and mic.

Can also get the third party 1.

Stelph is true, it's a problem.

VOIP (FRING) is off once you exit to use other apps like music, etc.

Kind of doesn't work like computer where you can leave the VOIP/messenger on standby with online status.

I try to Fring-ed it without earphone mic and guess what.

I heard a repeat sound of myself coming from the speaker but it didn't goes to Fring.

The delay sound was like half second.

Does that mean iPod Touch actually has built-in mic but not enable?

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