The Telco Giant Offers VoIP! It was coming, it was just a matter of time.
Here’s a quick service summary from the PLDT Talkpad website:
PLDT TalkPad enables Filipinos outside the Philippines to get in touch with their loved ones back home without worrying about the distance and cost. All they need is a computer (PC) with broadband Internet* connection, a PLDT TalkPad account and voila! They can start enjoying its incomparably low rates for more frequent and much longer talks with their family and friends in the Philippines.
First, yehey for this VoIP service by PLDT. As I’ve always said in the past, any additional telecommunications service adds value to the entire market.
It’s too early to tell whether PLDT Talkpad will indeed provide excellent service. But the mere investment of PLDT in this kind of service is a big win for Filipinos. It just basically means that Pinoys have another additional option for communicating across the seas. When there is a bigger supply of telecommunications services, prices go down. We like it when prices go down, don’t we?
Second, some additional remarks:
- Just looking at their rates page gives me a headache. I guess my eyes are just too tired of reading tables and charts. Wish they could just simplify their rates page.
- PLDT’s pitch as compared to Skype: “With PLDT Talkpad, you can contact anyone, anytime even when they are not online, unlike with Skype, Yahoo and other VoIP services.” What they’re saying is, Talkpad can be used to call other landlines or mobile phones. Actually, both Skype and Yahoo can call landlines and mobile phones too.
- Incoming calls and text are FREE! Weeee! Subscribers will be issued a telephone number in the format 0812-xxx-yyyy. Receiving calls through this number is free, but the person who called will be charged.
- Promo: “First 1000 subscribers can Enjoy 50% Bonus credits with every reload.” Yup yup. But make sure you don’t lose that bonus to other service terms and conditions.
- I’m seeing quite a number of terms and conditions (limitations?). Here are some conditions taken from the Talkpad website:
- Credits are fully consumable within 30 days from date of purchase. You may reload whenever you please, even if your current balance has not yet been fully consumed.
- Reload to continue making calls and text messages, otherwise only chat will be allowed after 1 month with no top up.
- Keep loading to maintain your PLDT Talkpad number, otherwise your account will be deactivated after 3 months with no top up.”
- I’m not actually sure what those conditions mean exactly. And that’s what I’m afraid of. With such ambiguity, I’m afraid many confused customers will get frustrated when some of the services will eventually be curtailed or cut-off because of some conditions in the use of the service. I hope this doesn’t go like the many complaints about another PLDT service, the Pwede Card.
Here’s a little more detail from Talkpad’s website:
PLDT TalkPad users can also be reached by anyone from anywhere in the world through their personal PLDT TalkPad numbers (0812-xxx-yyyy), which will be provided upon registration. So whenever they are online, they can receive calls and text messages wherever they are at home, in the office, in an Internet caf or even while traveling. Users wont be charged for any incoming call or text message.
Furthermore, since this service is from PLDT, users are assured of reliable service and quality.
- The clarity of call is near landline quality!
- Has a real-time log of calls and text messages sent to provide accurate usage details.
- Honest and transparent charging NO HIDDEN CHARGES!
So why waste money on phone cards that can drain ones budget with dishonest charging?
With PLDT TalkPad, overseas calls to the Philippines feel like a local call. This is certainly the best find for the smart Filipino.
Is this good for OFWs?
Maybe. Some of the things to consider:
- Competitiveness of Call Rate – this will vary depending on the location of the OFWs and their “usual” method of communication. Obviously Talkpad will be cheaper than mobile phone calls. But Talkpad will be more expensive than PC-to-PC VoIP voice calls via Skype or Yahoo.
- Quality of voice call – This has yet to be seen. The subscriber’s internet connection will be one of the biggest factors for voice call quality.
- Technical support – Cross our fingers they have good tech support. If PLDT doesn’t serve their customers well, the dissatisfied customers will be screaming their hearts out on blogs. Do they have International Tech support? I doubt, but I hope .
Visit the PLDT Talkpad website for more details:
talk pa ng talk
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