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Truphone launches Local Anywhere service

Only slightly later than expected

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

Truphone has finally launched its Local Anywhere service, providing customers with (multiple) local numbers so they can benefit from local rates.

The Local Anywhere service was announced at last year's Mobile World Congress, and promised during 2009, so it's only slightly late. The premise is that customers have multiple phone numbers, one for each location to which they travel, enabling incoming and outgoing calls to be charged at local rates with the complexities and routing handled over Truphone's VoIP-based network.

Last year the company didn't announce any networks willing to carry the service, but we now know that Vodafone is the lucky host in the UK which lends some credibility to the project.

So if you regularly skip over the pond you can have a US number alongside a UK one, with your caller ID reflecting the country you're in. Your UK contacts will still be able to call your UK number and (more importantly) pay UK (mobile) rates, while your American mates can dial a local number with equally low pricing.

Those of us who have enough trouble remembering one number might want to pass on this offering, but it's not hard to see applications if Truphone can market the offering well, and price all those local calls competitively.

Last year we were promised clever promotional stunts, but all we have so far is a press release - perhaps the clever stuff will follow once Truphone has expanded its retail channel beyond British Airways customers and its own web site.

When not in the USA or UK customers will have to pay roaming rates as usual, though Truphone tells us it's planning to add more countries during 2010. ®

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