Wireless essentials, add-ons, features or Wireless Bill Bloaters; for most, these services are nearly as crucial as having a voice and data plan. Most of these features are only available through your carrier and, in order to save money, may be bundled with other features. Within these bundles, may be services that you may not want, or even find quite annoying... *Cough* Rogers *Cough* Who Called
Of course that's just my personal opinion, that or a bad cold coming on. Besides functionality, you have to look at cost as well. Although it would be fantastic to have all the bells and whistles that you would want, you may not be able to afford it. The light at the end of the economical tunnel is still a far distance away and every penny counts. For this review, I experienced a couple of firsts; my first software review from the BlackBerry App World and (from what I remember) the first time I looked at a third party service capable of replacing am essential carrier service. Let's have a look at Privus Mobile Caller ID.
About Privus Mobile
Mobile Caller ID is available on more than 30 international carriers, on a huge array of devices. Privus Mobile offers a "Phone Filter" tool that allows you to determine if the service is available in your Country, and on your device. For BlackBerrys, you will need to be running OS 4.2 or higher and 1MB of space (a lot, I know). They also recommend that if you have WiFi, leave it on.
Sometimes, a good app is one that doesn't need to be set up before it can work for you. The concept behind Privus Mobile Caller ID is pretty simple; experience the same landline call display benefits on your BlackBerry. Well, not all BlackBerrys will utilize the full benefits of this application.
Here's how it works; Mobile Caller ID requires a data connection in order to retrieve caller information (name and number). The application will "ping" its database, along with the databases of major carriers (Rogers, T-Mobile, etc) for the required information, which is then verified before it is displayed on your screen. If you missed the call, or you have hung up, Mobile Caller ID will then generate a screen where you can see who has called and allows you to add the caller information to your address book with a click of a trackball. Throughout my testing, I found the service quite accurate and easy to use.
Calling in using Mobile Caller ID
Adding callers to your address book is easy
Only BlackBerrys with 3G will have access to caller information before you answer, the device requires real-time voice and data capabilities. Other Berrys will still be able to see who called afterwards and add them to the address book. The only problem I found was actually based on carrier information. The databases of smaller carriers aren't accessible, only the number and location will be retrieved. The application doesn't require many settings, but you can change the language, enable/disable the application and activate/deactivate the save contact prompt.
the settings menu
Let's look at a quick cost comparison between a carrier and the service. Since I'm on Rogers Wireless, we'll compare their Name Display wireless essential.
Cost: $8.00 / month (works out to be $24 for 3 months and $96 for 1 year)
Term: monthly term
Calls originating outside Canada will not display the name of the caller.
Privus Mobile Caller ID
Cost: approx $7.01 for 1 month, $19.97 for 3 months and $70.63 for 1 year**
Term: Subscription required (1, 3, 12 months)
** The $5.95 for 1 month, $16.95 for 3 months and $59.95 for 1 year found on their website is in USD.
Privus Mobile Caller ID offers competitive pricing, enhanced features and more reliability. Even with only having Call Display (not name display), you still would have to manually look up numbers after the call. Besides its offerings, Privus Mobile Caller ID is backed by a rapid-response support team. Want to try before you buy? There is a free trial available. If that's not enough to convince you, ask Harry Sasquatch. I almost died laughing.
Access to the name of the caller, even when they're not in your address book
Easily add to your address book with a click
not all carriers have a database to access
3G needed for real-time updates
uses data to retrieve information for every call - make sure your data plan can cover it.
Privus Mobile is available through BlackBerry App World, but for more information, click here.
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