Have you ever looked at your iPod Touch and wished that it was an iPhone? With our advancements in mobile development why couldnt an iPod make phone calls? The mobile development world has taken an interesting turn that could prove interesting to say the least. FreedomPop is a startup company that has created a sleeve for the iPod that basically turns it into an iPhone all for $99. This sounds too good to be true right? It truthfully doesn’t create an iPhone as much as allow you to use Wi-Fi anywhere you go.
The mobile development company FreedomPop is offering an innovative plan for the cost of $99. The 4G iPod sleeve that they have created comes with 500MB of data per month for free. Yes free. They have plans for ways to increase the cap on the free data up to 1 Gig, and after that there are promotions and things you can do to potentially raise it up to 5 Gigs. This all sounds too good to be true, right? FreedomPop believes that the internet is a right, not a privilege. These guys want to provide free service, however you do have the ability to pay as low as $10 a month to increase your data cap.
How it works
For the moment the device is only available for certain iOS devices, but FreedomPop has big plans to bring this device to many mobile development companies as well as providers. Android should be seeing it soon.
By using the WiMax and sprints LTE networks, this device is basically a Wi-Fi hotspot wherever you go. This is a massive improvement and offers the ability to bring connectivity to even Wi-Fi only devices no matter where you are. You may have to use Skype or some other VoIP service to actually make calls; however it can now be done. To add to the excitement FreedomPop has hinted that the ability to make voice calls will be folding into its wireless service.
What it all means
The ability to bring internet to Wi-Fi only devices could be a massive step for the mobile development world. For many users, the ability to call or text is not the only reason to have a phone. This could even solve the lack of data capabilities in the Nexus 7, which would make an already spectacular device even better. With the ability to tether up to 8 devices to the hotspot things could get interesting. Will this device change how our phones are used in today’s world? This is improbable, but it certainly gets the gears turning on how this could be used.
What I Think
Personally, I feel that the mobile development world could use something like this. Phones are able to create a mobile hotspot which has been very useful. For those of us that don’t have or want to pay for hotspot or premium data from our providers, this could be the solution. Everyone likes the term free, but the fact is really cheap is almost as good. The statement is they plan to undercut ISP prices by 20-40%. I am rarely not on a Wi-Fi network so it isn’t always and issue; however being able to use my tablet or iPod to make calls or surf the web while I am away from home would be fantastic.
I truly want to applaud FreedomPop for their plans. The plan to give away free data is an attractive one, but also one I can’t imagine is easy. The company has to profit in order to offer such a service for long. With the offered chance to gain additional data per month by getting others to sign up they could solve this issue, but that would be a lot of $99 cases.
FreedomPop is going change the mobile development world, even if it is just a little. The ability to have devices such as the Nexus 7, iPod, or even Wi-Fi only iPads out and functioning without the need of a router could easily be a game changer. Phone providers better watch out if this product becomes popular. Chances are that many will not leave their chosen ISP companies, but you never know. At the very least the mobile development community can hope that providers will lower prices to try to stay competitive with the upstart.