Motorola has a service called PRIP in conjunction with NII Holdings, a push-to-talk (PTT) service that's available in Mexico, Brazil and the rest of Latin America, with 11 million users subscribed to it. Now, the company is bringing the service to the US and it's already available for download in the Google Play Store.
Users have to pay a monthly fee of $7.99 but that allows for unlimited calls through Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G networks to any subscriber in the world, no matter where they are. Similar to what Nextel has been doing for years, but in current networks and phones instead of the limited old technology Nextel had. The price does sound a little steep, but much cheaper than the current fees for international calls.
Greg Santoro, executive VP at NII Holdings, said:
"After the successful launch of PRIP in Mexico in April, we are pleased to roll out this service to users in the U.S., with PRIP, NII and Motorola Mobility are expanding the ecosystem of PTT users and providing those affected by the recent iDEN® shutdown in the U.S. with an affordable and instant PTT alternative to stay in contact with their business colleagues, friends, family and with our 11 million subscribers in Mexico, Brazil and our other markets in Latin America."
Over at Motorola Mobility, Greg Page, VP and general manager for iDEN added:
"We are excited to continue our strategic partnership with NII as we launch PRIP in the U.S, PRIP continues Motorola Mobility's longstanding history of providing the highest quality PTT services for customers who demand instant communication."
PRIP is built upon Motorola Mobility's Push-to-Talk technology, which is the gold standard for PTT services around the world.
As a launch offer for a limited time, if you sign up now, the first month is free, so if you feel like you have a use for this kind of service, you can at least give it a try before you start paying.
The app is pretty good and it will sync with your contacts and also has group conversations as well. Pretty close to what WhatsApp does but for PTT. It runs on most smartphones running Android 2.3 or higher so even older phones should run it with no issues as we saw in the last Android distribution chart.
Motorola is also launching PRIP to iPhones in the coming weeks so the user base can be greatly expanded if your network of people is not completely Android based.