Fone Forum

Miscellaneous => Roaming & callback services => Topic started by: andy on October 01, 2009, 01:11:38 PM



Title: Callback options
Post by: andy on October 01, 2009, 01:11:38 PM

This looks interesting. Could you shed some more light on call back services. How would this service work for someone calling from India to UK ?

I think what you're asking about there is a callthrough service - someone in India dials the free access number, then the destination

Callback service consists of setting up two calls, the first inbound to the would-be caller, and connecting them together. It's attractive as another option for avoiding indigenous tariffs on the provider being used, whether landline or mobile.

But because it involves two calls, callback won't always be cheaper. Used from a mobile, for example, if there is a bundle of paid inclusive minutes, like a UK user at home in the UK, then callthrough is likely to be better (depending on the average minute price in the bundle), as callback has to reach the user's mobile at a suitable tariff as well as the destination.

One example of callback being attractive is from a hotel room, if one can chat up the receptionist and find out the direct incoming number. Or I've done it to callbox numbers here and abroad, but they don't all publish their number, or even have one. For mobile use abroad, in some countries some of the local SIMs have very good direct international tariffs, but if not, then either callthrough from or callback to a local SIM can be very worthwhile.



Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: Dave on October 01, 2009, 01:39:07 PM
..... Also I've been on the hunt for a reliable UK number based callback platform for a while. I'd be curious to test this one. I am getting fed up with callback systems that significantly delay the time taken to call you back. Does anyone know of any others that maybe considered reliable?

The one I have thought of using, but haven't tried as yet, is provided by Wavecrest.  http://www.talkbacktele.com/

Its rate for calling UK from Spain used to be 4p, but I see that it has gone up to 4.49p / min.

If you open an account with them, you can also call the UK for 2p / min. through a 912 access number if that helps.
They also have access numbers in quite a few other countries, many of which are freefone ones.

I can't help you further, as I have never subscribed to one as yet.  Sorry.



Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: petkow on October 01, 2009, 02:20:39 PM
Thanks Dave, Andy and all. I will look into that wavecrest option.

I'm on my mobile at the moment. I  actually (stupidly) typed a long reply to callback to India options but my phone crashed! I will retype it this evening when I get home.


Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: amitjajoo on October 01, 2009, 04:29:58 PM
thanks all for sharing the info  ;D


Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: petkow on October 02, 2009, 08:37:06 AM
Could you shed some more light on call back services. How would this service work for someone calling from India to UK ?
I meant to reply in a bit more detail to this yesterday, but then had some technical trubles. I will do so again now:

As Andy has rightly pointed out, I was initially referring to their callthrough access number in India, but to take the story a little further, a callback to India may also make some economic sense with this company! Also they do not appear too keen to publish the callthrough on their website, probably as it does not have 100% approval in India yet. (From the TRAI). Also, it may also incurr a surcharge from your credit if used, as after all these cost something to maintain. (Especially if they are in the still relatively rare national tollfree number range in India).

To get around all of this, with their callback setup, it will cost under 2p/min to call a landline in the UK from any telephone in India, without the provider of the line in India needing to know anything. How it works in practice is that the user in India (let's just call him Supandi) dials the UK access number, lets it ring once and hangs up. Obviously, Supandi will not get charged for that call. In a few seconds, Supandi's phone will be ringing. When he picks it up, he will hear a prompt like "Please enter the number you wish to dial". He then dials Rani's number in London town, and he can talk to his beloved for as long as he has credit. Of course in practice, as Supandi is stuck in India, it is actually likely that Rani has set up the account and put her hard earned Britsh pounds into the account for him. Having said that, Rani could be calling Supandi in the first place!

Anyhow, As Andy has also pointed out, callback systems are really not all that much use anymore. They work really well when calling some destination is significantly cheaper than calls made from that destination to you. Even in the UK, from a PAYG mobile, it can still make significant sense if using a Finarea/Betamax callback rate to the mobile which starts at under 5p/min (e.g. 12voip.com).

I first used callback from India around 1995/1996 when it really made a lot of financial sense. At that time calling from India to UK was around 1 unit per second! (A unit or pulse was around Rs.1.20). Also the strange system in place in India at the time meant that the more you used your phone in a month, the more that each unit (or pulse rate) would cost you. (A strange way of punishing heavy users). Also to make matters worse the corrupt wallahs in our local exchange would have a habit of looking for the highest bills, and route more illegal calls onto these. The idea was that someone who is used to paying Rs.20,000 a month will not notice if it is Rs.23,000. All in all, making lots of International phone calls in India could be an expensive business. Remember these were days were there was no internet in India, hardly any internet in the UK and Phone calls from the UK to India weren't cheap either! (the UK was only just begining to get out of the the BT monopoly!)

The callback system I setup for our line in India was from Florida, USA and I think they used to charge around 70c/min to India and then around 10c/min onto the UK and elsewhere in Europe. So calls would cost around 80c/min total. Sounds expensive now, but it was a fraction of what I would pay to make calls from India, and significantly cheaper than calling from UK to India via BT. Also, on the Indian end, it was a fairly useful way of getting around Indian red tape etc. Basically, authorities in India just could not see how much you were spending on your phone and snoop around at what numbers you were calling etc. Also a further benefit was the more I spent with the Florida company, the cheaper my calls got, unlike in India where it went the other way!


Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: amitjajoo on October 02, 2009, 09:37:36 AM
Thanks Petkow for reminding the old days from India  :D


Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: andy on October 02, 2009, 11:56:20 AM
One additional thing I'd say about callback triggered by ringing a number, which doesn't answer, just gives a busy tone or hangs up:

The call isn't mean to be charged. But I have occasionally seen this metered as a 2 second call, which gets annoying if it is per minute billing.

I've had this when callling from mobile networks in Lithuania and Slovakia, the first with a Lithuanian SIM to a now defunct callback provider, about 5 years ago. Then with both Slovakian and UK SIMs to numbers in America, preset to call back a specific number, about 4 years ago.

Whether it is due to features at the gateway itself or the network called from, I don't know, or whether such things still occur. I was in both countries again this summer, and didn't try.

So I'd suggest a bit of caution, check a bill before getting  carried away making lots of calls.


I still prefer callback via other trigger methods. The only such provider I use now is ReturnCall, without problems, but not much use, and only in Germany and  France recently


Title: Re. Callback options
Post by: petkow on October 02, 2009, 02:03:47 PM
Yes, good point about the 2 second charging. I have had this in the past too! The nice thing about missed call triggering in my opinion, is that it is easiest to do especially whilst doing other things. e.g. It can be done quite easily with voice activated dialling whilst driving for example. It's pretty impossible (and downright dangerous) using a Java appelet or sending an SMS whilst driving!

As you know, like you I used to make quite a lot of use of Returncall.co.uk in the past, but see little use for it now (especially as the rates are nothing to write home about!) However, whilst I did, I was often frustrated as to how long it would sometimes take to get a callback, and often I never did! Hence my quest for a more stable callback platform.

Dave's suggestions of the wavecrest solution might be worth a shot, but their oneway callback rate to a UK mobile (for where I would intend to use the service) are quite high at 17p!


Note to an Admin/Mod:
As this thread is becoming a bit "callbacky", might I suggest editing the title a bit?


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: mobaholic on October 02, 2009, 02:19:06 PM

Thanks for the suggestion petkow: I have split the topic and moved the new thread here.        :)



Title: Re: Re. Callback options
Post by: andy on October 02, 2009, 04:07:33 PM
The nice thing about missed call triggering in my opinion, is that it is easiest to do especially whilst doing other things. e.g. It can be done quite easily with voice activated dialling whilst driving for example. It's pretty impossible (and downright dangerous) using a Java appelet or sending an SMS whilst driving!


Note to an Admin/Mod:
As this thread is becoming a bit "callbacky", might I suggest ...

last bit first: good idea, I was feeling that, thanks to both

I didn't realise that would be possible.

I mean I knew voice dialling is, but never have; I didn't realise you could do it in an existing call.

So far I've gone a couple steps in the in-call menu, send dtmf, then find via the phonebook, etc

What you're suggesting, is it as easy as it sounds, no tricky bits? It doesn't hold one call and start another, or do we need an extra hint?


Or have I got the wrong idea, and only the trigger call is voice activated, not the subsequent choice of number called? Or are there more options I don't know ?


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: petkow on October 05, 2009, 12:54:48 PM
Hi Andy. Sorry for the delayed reply. Briefly... I think you might have read into it too far. I do not have a solution for that, other than dialling manually! I am pretty good at doing that from memory, with one hand without looking at the screen, though its not the safest thing to be doing while driving! Apart from that I did a bit of messing around with using voice recorder to record a sequence of DMTF tones that represent the number you want to call, but i have not really got to grips with this. You cannot dial from adress book in the normal way as you mentioned.

Of course some providers might allow you to assign a short code. Betamax do, but not for callbacks! 


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: petkow on December 10, 2009, 10:03:11 AM
I think its always good forum practice that when a thread is split, that a link is provided back to the other thread. This is especially useful for someone who is looking for info in a hurry, or is on a mobile device (like me at the moment).

I have been looking for the OP of this thread.. but have not been able to do so. I even tried searching for text strings from Amitjajoos quoted text but the only hits I get are back to here!

Can someone help?


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: Goodman on December 10, 2009, 10:53:54 AM
Petkow I think this is the thread you are looking for

http://www.foneforum.co.uk/index.php/topic,1011.msg4724.html#msg4724




Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: mobaholic on December 10, 2009, 11:03:27 AM
I think its always good forum practice that when a thread is split, that a link is provided back to the other thread. This is especially useful for someone who is looking for info in a hurry, or is on a mobile device (like me at the moment).

I have been looking for the OP of this thread.. but have not been able to do so. I even tried searching for text strings from Amitjajoos quoted text but the only hits I get are back to here!

Can someone help?

I should certainly like to help you petkow, but please allow me to do that in my own way.

I am pretty certain that I was the one who split the original thread, so I am sorry that you are upset about the way in which I do it, but please allow me to explain why I disagree with you concerning 'best practice.'

The reason why I have stopped using a link back to the previous thread, whereever possible, is that I realized that they were NOT needed !        :o

The information that you were seeking is actually available to you in the OP itself.  All that you apparently lack is a little understanding about all of the features that our Bulletin Board Coding provides !        ::)

If you click on the actual quote in the OP ( where it says Quote from: amitjajoo on October 01, 2009, 12:45:04 PM ) it takes you straight back to the thread from which it was taken.  You really DON'T need a separate link posted at all.  This works as well on your mobile browser as it does on a PC.        ;)

When I was on telecomforum I used to see admin clutter up the forum with redundant links all over the place.  I often wondered if he knew anything about what he was doing !  ( It was one of many reasons why I often wondered if he was short of a few marbles ?  :-\ )

If an extra post giving the link back were necessary, I should certainly provide it every time.  But as I realized that these merely produce redundant clutter on a forum, I have decided we are better off without using them.        ;D

Please try clicking on the OP quote as I suggested, and then let me know if you still have a problem with what I do.
It is just as quick to click the OP quote on your mobile 'phone, as it is to click on the same link given in a separate post !        ;)



Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: andy on December 10, 2009, 11:42:14 AM
what petkow is was trying to remember is Nyxfone

http://www.nyxfone.com/access_numbers.php

(but now I see he found it not long afterwards)


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: petkow on December 10, 2009, 12:32:33 PM
Thanks. I did not think of clicking on the header of the quoted text!

Any idea why the search string which is found in Amitjajoos post on both threads "Could you shed some more light on call back services" or indeed just "call back services" only returns this thread and not the original?


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: petkow on December 10, 2009, 12:50:03 PM
...clutter up the forum with redundant links all over the place.  I often wondered if he knew anything about what he was doing !  ( It was one of many reasons why I often wondered if he was short of a few marbles ?  :-\ )
This is your territory and obviously you are entitled to do it your way! In my opinion there are many worse ways of cluttering a forum than a few useful links which can even be hyperlinked under a single word like this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netiquette)!

I think I am from the old school of over redundance in letting users find what they are looking for. Ever wondered why in most software there are multiple routes of executing the same function?


Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: mobaholic on December 10, 2009, 02:11:37 PM
Thanks. I did not think of clicking on the header of the quoted text!

I guessed that petkow.        ;D

Any idea why the search string which is found in Amitjajoos post on both threads "Could you shed some more light on call back services" or indeed just "call back services" only returns this thread and not the original?

I believe there may be 2 explanations for that petkow:

1).  The original thread was entitled: "New service calling Pakistan", whereas this new thread was given a spanking new title.  This may have confused the search tool.

2).  The search tool on the old niftylist forum suffered similar problems I recall, and the one here certainly suffers from some deficiencies, ( which is one reason why I am always hassling Mikael to get our forum software updated on our server ! )        ;)

We are still running on SMF 1.1.6, whereas the latest edition is 1.1.11 !        :'(



Title: Re: Callback options
Post by: mobaholic on December 10, 2009, 02:16:07 PM
I think I am from the old school of over redundance in letting users find what they are looking for. Ever wondered why in most software there are multiple routes of executing the same function?

The multiple ways sometimes used are often more confusing for people than the one rather obvious way we use here IMO.        ;)

But you are entirely free to disagree with me.          ;)

We cannot expect to agree on everything, can we petkow ?         :-\