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Thread: TextNow Free Talk/Text on Sprint

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by e.mote View Post
    Saying "we'll make money on ads" is easy, the hard part is the how. As said, no ad-supported phone service has succeeded thus far, and the track record is 0-fer. So, yeah, it's a pretty easy assumption to say "ad-supported phone service a tough row to hoe." There is no business plan to give away free stuff, like what Google is doing with GV.
    Google Voice and the TextNow app are not phone services. They are VOIP applications. VOIP is much less expensive than running a true phone service and is the most likely reason why so many exist at a free cost. Just like email and the thousands upon thousands of apps you can find on the app store, with many of them costing zero dollars.

    TextNow is the first to offer a free, unlimited talk and text plan off of a WiFi connection that uses a Sprint SIM for a data connection to make and receive VOIP calls and text/picture messages. I am sure this service costs them more than just having a VOIP application, even with ad and data mining revenue.

  2. #62
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    Just a little info about TextNow.

    Information on TextNow from Mar 10, 2016 indicates no outside funding since $1.5MM (CAD) in 2011: https://news.communitech.ca/textnow-...ever-heard-of/

    Current Employee Lists: https://about.textnow.com

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    Just a little info about TextNow.

    Information on TextNow from Mar 10, 2016 indicates no outside funding since $1.5MM (CAD) in 2011: https://news.communitech.ca/textnow-...ever-heard-of/

    Current Employee Lists: https://about.textnow.com
    Cool, thanks for the information!

    I got a Sprint SIM card for my father in law to use the free TextNow service. So far, he likes the service. He's only had flip phones his whole life, so it's a major step for him.

    He says the calls drop quite a bit more than his flip phone and sometimes he has to redial a number since the "data connection is poor" with full bars on the phone. But for $0 per month, he said he'll live with the hiccups as he sees a cell phone as a secondary line of communication.

    He still has a home phone service, albeit with an Obitalk device paired with Google Voice (and an e911 service). So his phone service costs are close to $1 per month (to pay for the e911 service).

  4. #64
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    So far mine has been crap. WiFi off using Sprint LTE plenty of bars. VERY sketchy reception, caller can hear me, can’t hear anything from them. Texts seem to take forever to go through if they even do.

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by schippma View Post
    I am sure this service costs them more than just having a VOIP application, even with ad and data mining revenue.
    Nope. My estimations is that it costs them USD 0.50 /month per user.

    Data within the network to support their app is very cheap of not 0. Let's say, $ 0.10.
    Phone number: $ 0.10
    Phone calls: $ 0.001 /min . 100 mins = USD 0.10
    Last edited by RFK; 02-04-2020 at 01:32 PM.

  6. #66
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    As I indicated earlier, on WiFi, AT&T LTE, and T-Mobile LTE, using the previous TextNow app version, for calls to regular cellular #s, the quality has been good in my experience.

    I wonder if the issue is with Sprint cellular data, or is the new app and/or technology they are using for the new service somehow a downgrade from their previous VoIP service?

    Has anyone using the new TextNow standalone service compared the VoIP quality using WiFi vs Sprint cellular data?

  7. #67
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    I have been using their app for several years on WiFi with little to no problems. The problem seems to be with Sprint? When I try to use it on cellular only, even if I have plenty of bars, it’s just not usable. Is there a CS number I’m not seeing? I hate to do chat.

  8. #68
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    The TextNow app works great on WiFi, as well as on a T-Mobile data SIM, for both incoming and outgoing voice, text, and picture messages.

    The new Sprint Unlimited Nationwide Talk and Text SIM plan, when the service is on WiFi, works great. When the service is strictly on Sprint data, calls usually do not come through, I'd say it's a 50/50 shot. Outgoing calls do not connect at times and the number must be tried again since the app states "data connection is poor." Text messages, both in and out, seem to work well connected to the Sprint SIM data connection. My father in law is testing the new service using a Motorola X4.

    I would guess the issue is with the Sprint data connection. It seems the SIM goes idle after a period of inactivity unless one tries to open an app to access data, and then the SIM gets access for a period of time. This would explain the incoming call unreliability. At least, this is our observations with testing for the past 9-10 days.

  9. #69
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    i have been playing around with this on a spare device. 95% of my outgoing calls fail, incoming calls always ring but only about 50% can be answered of those about 50% have one way or no way audio. if i can get the calls to complete in or out with 2 way audio i do get pretty decent call quality.

    on same device using wifi works well.

    signing into same account on different device and works well over cellular data including a test on a sprint(actually ting) activated device.

    seems to be some glitches with how data is provisioned for this service, hopefully they get it worked out

    i did find it interesting how simply installing and signing into the app triggered programing of the phone(i did have to dial ##72786#) without having to provide IMEI, SIM card numbers etc. if they get the glitches worked out this will be a very easy to signup for service and does not require credit card, etc.

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zipy View Post
    I have been using their app for several years on WiFi with little to no problems. The problem seems to be with Sprint? When I try to use it on cellular only, even if I have plenty of bars, it’s just not usable. Is there a CS number I’m not seeing? I hate to do chat.
    I have 226-316-2663 and 226-476-1578, but the online chat works very well, if you're available during their limited operating hours.

  11. #71
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    I have no issue with this app while on Sprint network.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by e.mote View Post

    >Doesn't hurt to have as a back-up on another network though,

    The TN service isn't a "glovebox/backup/emergency" solution, because it needs to be used "regularly" or the number will expire. This applies to the free VoIP TN app, and it should doubly apply to the standalone service, since the latter is costing TN more money.

    https://supportwireless.textnow.com/...ber-Valid-For-

    "Typically if the number is not used for 3 consecutive days or more on a free account the number could expire."
    Emphasis is on "could" apparently. I've had the same TextNow number for years, and hardly ever use it. Certainly not every three days. Not even every three weeks!

    They send me an email about once a month warning me to use it or it will expire "soon". I then send a single text from my TextNow number, and I'm good for another month.

    Since you can run the app with the same account on multiple devices (or even in a web interface on your PC), you could send a text from the account once every couple of weeks, without even needing physical access to the Sprint-powered device, and then it would be a perfectly adequate glovebox phone.

    Of course, given Sprint's coverage vs. the other carriers, I'm not sure what service one would use Sprint as an emergency backup for. T-Mobile is my main service, so my "glovebox" backup is either an AT&T or VZW MVNO, depending on cost. Currently it's a $3/month 1GB FreedomPop (AT&T) SIM.











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    >Emphasis is on "could" apparently. I've had the same TextNow number for years, and hardly ever use it. Certainly not every three days. Not even every three weeks!

    Thanks for the data point. IMO, the expire duration would vary widely, depending on how much demand there is for numbers from a particular area code. Your AC is probably not being used by many, hence the long expire. I've seen reports of much shorter expire times. YMMV should be the watchword here.


    >Since you can run the app with the same account on multiple devices...

    I consider any adware app that potentially mines my personal/location data to be malware. It would be hard enough for me to install such on one (throwaway) device, let alone multiple devices. My privacy and personal data are worth something.

    This isn't to say that I've sworn against use of any ad-based apps. I do use some. But it's on a case-by-case basis, and only after a risk-vs-reward consideration.


    >Of course, given Sprint's coverage vs. the other carriers...

    I think that's the problem here. As the standalone service is bound to Sprint, then safe to say that it is actually inferior to the app--as long as you have your own net access.

    Phone service needs to be completely reliable, if nothing else. Even if the problems reported here are resolved, and reliability improves, a 90% reliable service is still worthless.

    And if you already have net/cell access, there's already a better (no-ad) solution, GV/Hangouts.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by elecconnec View Post
    Emphasis is on "could" apparently. I've had the same TextNow number for years, and hardly ever use it. Certainly not every three days. Not even every three weeks!

    They send me an email about once a month warning me to use it or it will expire "soon". I then send a single text from my TextNow number, and I'm good for another month.

    Since you can run the app with the same account on multiple devices (or even in a web interface on your PC), you could send a text from the account once every couple of weeks, without even needing physical access to the Sprint-powered device, and then it would be a perfectly adequate glovebox phone.

    Of course, given Sprint's coverage vs. the other carriers, I'm not sure what service one would use Sprint as an emergency backup for. T-Mobile is my main service, so my "glovebox" backup is either an AT&T or VZW MVNO, depending on cost. Currently it's a $3/month 1GB FreedomPop (AT&T) SIM.
    That matches my experience with the TextNow app/VoIP service.

    It really works just like a Google Voice # + Hangouts or the GV app, except all in one app, and with a usage requirement and ads unless you pay to remove the ads.

    I hope the new TextNow standalone service is useful to enough people that it becomes a success for them.

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by e.mote View Post
    >Since you can run the app with the same account on multiple devices...

    I consider any adware app that potentially mines my personal/location data to be malware. It would be hard enough for me to install such on one (throwaway) device, let alone multiple devices. My privacy and personal data are worth something.

    This isn't to say that I've sworn against use of any ad-based apps. I do use some. But it's on a case-by-case basis, and only after a risk-vs-reward consideration...

    ...And if you already have net/cell access, there's already a better (no-ad) solution, GV/Hangouts.
    Do you not see any irony there?

    P*ssing on adware apps for their potential data-mining privacy issues is one thing, but then offering up any Google product as an alternative seems almost comical.



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