Why do we still pay long distance for calls?

The telephone when it came out was a great technology. No longer did we need to write letters and send them and wait for the reply after a couple of weeks. Now we could have communication in real time and connect almost instantly. All you needed to do was pick up the transmitter and call your friend and wait for them to pick up the receiver. It was an awesome technology. However it did come at a cost and in its early days was a very expensive piece of technology. Few people had it so most people still used letters for distant friends.

Your voice was transmitted through cables analogly to the receiver. The further away the person was the more expensive the call was. So long distance calls were very expensive in the early days till the earlier 80s, when analog communication improved and also with the rise of fibre optics and digital communication, companies could connect places much cheaper and on a great scale. Prices of phone calls dropped and long distance and oversee calls become much cheaper.

Today with most calls being transmitted digitally, phone calls are quite cheap to do and long distance calls too. However other technologies have arisen to help people to communicate as well. Mobile networks, the internet and it’s whole host of communication tools like e-mails, im clients, voip networks etc. So why do we still pay for long distance calls at a premium ? Why hasn’t the new age of communication technology taken over long distance calls.

The cell phones we have today mostly come with internet connection possibility so to me it should be more advantageous to me to use the internet to call my friends using video call apps or chat with them over facebook or something.

Despite the host of new options to call people today, some things haven’t changed with phone calls. Calls are not necessarily becoming cheaper. It still cost more to call long distance and most importantly the technology is not improving. This is something that should have decreased in price with improvement in technology and greater need for real time communication. However that hasn’t occurred and doesn’t seem likely.

However it may just be the case that phone calls are never to become close to free but just supplanted by another technology like many others before it. The telegraph never became cheap to do and the telephone nevertheless still took over business of telegraphs.

Phone calls through traditional methods seem destined to be taking over by alternatives means like im chatting in real time, voip calls, video chats etc. However probably the main thing blocking these alternatives technology from taking over the business of traditional phone calls is the availability of internet everywhere even on the road and the fact that the main means of having internet on the road is mostly controlled by major phone companies which now looks like a risk they don’t want to take by leaving their phone business vulnerable.
In any case it shouldn’t be long when internet becomes available on a greater scale on the road and at home with much more bandwidth where the direct cost of paying for a phone call or long distance call goes away for the alternatives means using the internet.

Why video chatting is not yet huge?

You know what I mean, right? This was a technology that was supposed to revolutionize the world. Remember when people first video chatted on old TV shows like Star Trek and it seemed so cool. Now that we have it today its still not huge deal. There is skype and a few other popular apps like oovoo, tiny chat and google+ hangouts but then that’s it. Skype although pretty widely used now is still an alternative to actually calling and im chatting and is not used by the majority of internet users still they have not yet transitioned to video calling.

So the question begs to answer. Why is video chat still not big ? I read an article about someone who said the probably problem with video calling is the effort in it. When you are video calling, you check to look good, adjust your environment and more. Also in places where silence is demanded you can’t video chat with friends because you won’t want to make noise. Also some people find it distracting to be talking to someone and also have to actually pay attention to them.

I do agree with some of these cons put forward. It is true that video chatting won’t be good for everyone as compared to actual typing. However video chatting makes conversations feel real due to being able to actually talk and see the person. It gives more pleasure. So then its time we put forward what video chatting brings to the table. Video calling is much more interactive and more fun than normal typing. With im chatting, you get information passed along but with video chatting you don’t only get information passed across but emotions as well. It gives a great pleasure in communicating. Also its better for sharing because you don’t only share but share and comment about it in real time which makes sharing better and more interactive.
Due to the major players of video chat, there is a very important thing that we are also overlooking with video chatting. Its free! To video call your friend on skype you don’t pay a dime. On google+ hangouts you can talk with a crowd and watch videos in real time.

With Reflap, you can form a whole video chat community or network and either video call them or start video kickbacks. So almost about everywhere, video calling is free. This normally should be a huge threat to mobile carrier dollars. What would be the need to pay a lot, for mobile carrier plans when you can video call and chat with all your friends from video chat apps. Actually not only can you talk to them you can actually see them if you want. That in itself should be the a huge threat and a huge ball in video chat’s hand.

Its understandable that with its slow transition to mobile the following is rising slowly but with more and more video chat apps appearing on app markets, the bandwagon of video chat should leap hugely. It will allow you to talk and video call on the move as opposed to video chatting from your computer and hence give a greater chance to video chatting.

Actually to conclude it, I personally do not just see video chat as something that should be adopted by many more people to make it more mainstream. I think its roots could go much more further. It has the possibility to shake the grounds of Facebook and current social networks. It can do most of what current social networks do in a faster way and in a more interactive manner. Sharing with a video chat network will be faster and allow you to actually talk about them in real time like it would be done in a bar let’s say. Instead of im chatting you would actually talk or video chat. Want to plan an event, you can just do a live event on video chat like on google+. One camera performs while the rest watch and chat with the other viewers about the event they are watching. Imagine watching the Superbowl on a video chat conference with your friends. That seems like real fun.
So that’s why to me even if video chat is still not mainstream, its just a matter of time before it becomes the bandwagon which everyone will be one. Not only is it more fun it has such a huger plethora of tools which it can be used to change they way we network on the internet.

P.S.
I do agree that with every breakthrough, there is an adaptation period for people to adapt to a new technology. Just like texting or im chatting. So with that, it won’t be too long before video chat will have to go mainstream.

Why I love Video Chatting

I have read so many articles of people stating why they hate video chatting. It seems as if most of these authors think that video calls are awkward and they never know what to do during the call. People seem to be too self conscious of their image, think that they have to remain concentrated to the person they are call for the whole time of the call etc. Why the fuss on video chatting when it was supposed to be one of our most awaited future tech.

It appears as if people make a bigger deal of video calls than they are supposed to be. Video calls are what TV’s were to radios. Video calls add emotion to calls. When I make a video call with my friend I don’t stare into the eyes of my friend the whole length of the call and I don’t expect them to. We look at each other, he/she shows me something in their room (mostly) then they could later browse on a website while I’ll do the same and we continue conversing.  It just serves to add images to an audio conversation. Nobody expects you to stare into the eyes of someone you are conversing with in real life the whole length of the conversation. That would be creepy.

Phone calls are cool for conversation but video adds more emotion and more feelings and the more video chat the more you see the added emotion you get when you can see the person you are conversing with. If the person is a friend there is no need for awkwardness, you just sit down and talk. Like in the physical world, they don’t necessarily care how you look and you don’t necessarily care how they look too. So why should there be a fuss then ?

Even if the call is with a significant other why would there be awkwardness, aren’t you looking at the person you have feelings for? Seeing the person should be making you more excited like when you see them physically.

Video chats are awesome. Humans have been known to be visually stimulated and video calls add more emotions to conversations, they are the closest to the feeling of actually being with the person you are talking to. People who think video chats are not part of human nature, talk like the people who thought tv’s where a fad or thought nobody wanted PCs in their home.

Video calls are the evolution of synchronous communication online. There have been some people who say that people today prefer asynchronous communication but till the day people stop talking to each other face to face synchronous communication online and offline will still exist. (Also I don’t know about you, but I hating waiting for replies)  Asynchronous communication will from now on be around and coexist with synchronous communication but I dont expect it to dominate synchronous communication any time soon.

Also aren’t any first time conversation awkward. First dates are normally awkward, first calls are as well etc. If people argued that most video chat apps have sub par video quality or lags in the sound, that would be a much more appealing argument. But arguing that video calling is not human nature is ludicrous because humans have constantly defied what people thought weren’t their human nature before.

With bandwidth getting cheaper and increasing and better and better video chat apps, video chat will fulfill its potential.