The software integrates contact lists for packetized voice, IM communications, and other Web 2.0 sites.
Packetized voice is now available on the Apple iPhone, thanks to the development efforts of Fring, which on Wednesday made a beta version of its app available as a free download for mobile devices.
Fring, which describes itself as a mobile Internet community, enables "Fringsters" to communicate with contacts from AIM, Google Talk, ICQ, MSN, Skype, Twitter, and Yahoo lists. In addition to iPhone support, Fring also works with more than 500 mobile handsets, including Nokia Symbian Series 60 devices, Sony Ericsson UIQ Smartphones, and those that use Windows Mobile, the developer said in a statement.
This prerelease version "is designed to both answer demand from iPhone-owning would-be Fringsters and at the same time enable Fring to learn about user experience, benefit from early feedback, and influence the R&D process of the full release version," the company explained. A revised version will be made available later this year.
This beta enables iPhone users to sample Fring and how it works on an "opened" Apple handset. Fring users also will be able to make calls or send instant messages over Wi-Fi from their same lists of online contacts, the developer said.
Fring creates a single, integrated contact list when a user logs on to the service. And as an always-on, always-connected application, Fring offers PC-style "presence" indicators to display contacts' status -- online, away, offline, in a meeting, on their mobiles, for example.
Fring's VoIP app for iPhones is free to download and use. Consumers pay for any data they consume under existing service plans with their network provider; there are no hardware or location limitations to Fring's VoIP service, the company said.
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