One of the things that I have greatly appreciated about my iPhone is the fact that I still have held onto my unlimited data plan since I first signed up. It still rubs me the wrong way how much you have to pay for smartphone plans now days. I get the fact that cell phone companies have to charge more because they are subsidizing the phone, but there has got to be a better solution.
I have always thought that VOIP could somehow challenge these big, corporate cell companies and make themselves competitive. When Google Voice came out, it looked like they might be able to do this. But as we have learned over the past couple of years, VOIP doesn’t look like it is ready to be a player just yet. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t developers out there that are creating some cool apps for it. Outside of Google Voice, one option is SendHub. Let’s take a look at it after the jump.
As you start to use SendHub you won’t get overwhelmed with its features, as it really doesn’t have many — but don’t let that deter you. When you first sign up, you are assigned a phone number that acts just like a regular one. You can call and text message people using your iPhone and it would appear to them as if it was coming from this new number. They also have a group texting feature where depending on what plan you pick will dictate how many people you can have in your groups.
What I did like about this is that when someone calls this number, it doesn’t take them to the iPhone voice message, but a generic one where you will get the voicemail through the app. I like this because I can then use my iPhone as a work and personal phone. By giving people my SendHub number for work, that keeps my work calls and texts separate from ones I would get from friends and family.
SendHub takes the freemium route by starting you off with a decent package for free. You get 60 minutes of talk time, 1000 text messages and you can have up to three groups with 50 people in them max. From there, paid plans start at $10 and go all the way up to $150 a month for unlimited messaging and more minutes. You can also port over your existing cell phone number to use in Sendhub with these paid plans as well.
When I told a coworker about this app, he looked at me in disgust and asked, “Why bother with this when I can do all of this with the regular iPhone features?” I told him that he shouldn’t think of this as an app for personal use, although it could be, but think of its uses for work. So many of our students and parents that we work with are using text messaging way more than they are emailing nowadays, what if we texted them reminders instead of emailing them — would we get a better response?
That got him thinking more about his answer, and more about how this could actually work. In my opinion, the whole point of SendHub is for it to supplement your use of your iPhone. It may not look like much at first, but you have to think about the ways that you can use this as a communication tool for not only personal use, but for business as well. SendHub is a perfect tool to get your message to a group of people in a quick and easy way. I am on the go so much that I am hardly ever at my desk, but my iPhone is always with me and so regardless who calls me, I know that I can always get the call (to its own unique number, naturally).
If you are looking for this app as a competitor to Google Voice, you really can’t compare the two because GV has many more features than SendHub. I think SendHub is a perfect option for businesses that are looking to get their message out to a group of people. I also think it is great for people that want a separate line on their iPhone for whatever reason.
I will be the first to say that SendHub is not going to overwhelm you with great features, but what they do provide works well and the call clarity was pretty good. You can download the app for free from iTunes and you can get up and running in no time. If you have been looking for a way to have another line on your iPhone, I would suggest trying out the free plan and seeing how you like it and if it works for you. Would you actually use something like this or do you think it wouldn’t be worth it? Hit us up in the comments and let us know your thoughts.