Facebook Messenger

Completely free VOIP calls between Facebook users now available around the world

Unlike when it enabled the new Chat Heads feature with an update via the Play Store, Facebook has silently pushed out a feature to its Messenger app today to enable free VOIP calling. If you'll recall back to the beginning of March, the same happened to iOS users and Android users in Canada, but now we're looking at expanded availability in the U.S. and several more countries as well. The calls are of course completely free, and work between two Facebook users over data rather than the carrier's voice networks.

To check and see if you have the option available, tap into an ongoing chat and hit the "i" button in the top right corner. You should then see a simple "Free Call" button. It isn't the most elegant solution, but as a first release we're not going to complain much. Are you seeing the feature enabled in your own Messenger app? Let us know in the comments below.

 

Reader comments

Facebook Messenger VOIP calling expands outside of Canada

10 Comments

It says "your friend can't receive calls right now" is that a setting on my phone that I need to change or on theirs? Where might it be?

Just an FYI folks: it appears that if the other person doesn't have Messenger installed on their device (or if they are using a long out of date version) the button will be greyed out for that contact.

Also this is not a "free service" it uses your data connection, unless you have unlimited data for those of us that are lucky to have it. But this is a redundant feature since voice calls are unlimited on the big two carriers and price gouging tiers are the norm. If this works with your PC and Tablet over wifi then I could see it being worthwhile, unless you hate facebook, like myself.

It still has its uses, such as calling someone in another country, or, if you're out of the country and can access wi-fi, calling someone back home. Yes, there are several apps that will do that, and some will allow calls into the PSTN, but it's always good to have several installed in case one isn't working when you need to call. I did this last week when we were on a cruise. Sometimes I got good results with GrooVe IP, but Vonage Mobile, although it has inferior sound quality, worked better in low-bandwidth situations.

Facebook is now a very important part of our connectivity. I love staying connected all the time, www.maraconnect.com is helping me do that. I can chat, sms or call any of my Facebook friends without using their phone numbers. Now thats cool!