Thanks to modern advancements in technology, it’s easier to reach out to people while traveling abroad. There are still some difficulties that come with trying to stay connected via your mobile phone, mainly the tightrope act of avoiding exorbitant charges. We’ve all had to get phone cards that may or may not work, go through the process of calling our service provider to get an international minutes plan or use some other workaround method. Indeed, this is why apps like the popular wireless chat application WhatsApp which is free and relatively simple to use,have become staples for travelers and everyone else. But even that has some limits, especially for those who have problems with being able to find a Wi-Fi network they can use. But one company seeks to help ease the worries of WhatsApp users with a brand new product.
WhatSim was released a couple of days ago by the Italian company Zeromobile and its founder, Manuel Zanella. It is a SIM card that allows you to instantly connect to any WhatsApp user without having to be concerned about using up your roaming data. WhatSim also will locate and connect you to a wireless network instantaneously as well. The SIM card itself can be inserted like any other SIM card, but doing so allows you to link up immediately with over 400 mobile operators. You can then use WhatsApp for free.
The WhatSim card works in 150 countries including the United States. But according to initial reports, technical support is primarily focused on international customers in Europe, the Middle East, South America and some nations in Africa. It is compatible with all unlocked smartphones. WhatSim does come with a couple of provisions. First, the SIM card itself will run you anywhere from seven dollars and up yearly, depending on the cost for shipping being included. Additionally, WhatSim by itself mainly lets you chat for free anywhere. If you want to add pictures, voice messages or even video content, you’ll have to pay a ‘recharge’ fee via their website. One key thing to take note of as well – WhatSim is not officially affiliated with WhatsApp. It remains to be seen what they make of this new product.
In short, WhatSim could very well represent a breakthrough in truly free international mobile communication. It’s a product any progressive traveler would do well to keep an eye on.