Sunday, July 15, 2007

International Callback Phone Service

International callback is a relatively popular method of making low cost international phone calls from countries where telecommunication services are very expensive. The phone service in many of these countries is controlled by a monopoly phone company so the cost of making international calls using the local service provider or even phone cards can be exorbitant. International callback phone service is far cheaper since it essentially by-passes the high cost local service provider and routes calls through a lower cost third country. This can be done using different techniques but the results are the callers can save a lot of money on their calls by using international callback.

What we refer to as traditional callback phone service is used by dialing a special phone number in another country that has cheap telecommunication services. This is often in North America or Europe. The caller lets the phone ring one time than hangs up the phone. The special phone number is actually a computer that recognizes the caller from their phone number (Caller ID) and places a call back to the caller. The caller than answers the phone and finds a dial tone. The caller can then place a cheap international call to any location in the world. The call is routed over the lower cost phone system that may be located in a third country. The cost of the call is actually broken into two "legs". One leg is the cost of a phone call from the third country to their location and another leg is the cost of a call from the third country to the destination they are calling. However, even with two legs, the cost of making an international call using international callback is generally far cheaper than making the same call using a high cost, monopoly service provider. The cost of an international call from Kazakhstan to the USA is a good example. A call from Kazakhstan to the USA will cost anywhere from $0.50 to over $1 per-minute using phone cards or the Kazakhstan phone system. Using international callback the same call can be made for less than $0.10 per-minute.....a very substantial savings.

International callback is normally a prepaid service and there are several service providers and different types of products. One potential problem is that traditional callback is often blocked by high cost countries in order to protect their monopoly phone companies. It can be blocked fairly easily since a call is triggered by placing a phone call to a computer located in another country. The computer recognizes the caller using Caller ID technology so all a country needs to do is block Caller ID and they have blocked traditional callback. However, there are other callback services that are much more difficult or impossible to block. Two of these are often referred to as Web Call or SMS Call. Using Web Call a callback call is triggered using a specially formatted e-mail message while a simple text message from a cell phone is used to trigger a callback call using SMS Call. Both of these products are gaining popularity since they offer a convenient and cheap means of making international calls from high cost countries.

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