By HyunCheon Kim
Translated SeungYeon Woo
An international student in Allston, Han-na Kim was excited when she was calling her friend in Korea for free through VoiceTalk, launched on May 25th.
A housewife, Mihyun Lee, who moved to Boston only with her children, gladly said, “I can call my husband in Korea anytime I want through 'VoiceTalk' for free. I think this is sort of a revolution of smartphones.” Lee was busy to inform this great news to her friends who frequently use KakaoTalk for its many benefits.
The Kaokao Corporation, continuously developing popularity among smartphone users, decided to “stretch out VoiceTalk, which was test-operated in Japan, to worldwide,” on May 25th.
A free call system was always selected as one of the “best 5 needed functions for KaKaoTalk users” and now it has been released after test-operation, which was started last February in Japan. VoiceTalk works among KaokaoTalk users through any data plan network, such as 3G, LTE or Wi-Fi.
As VoiceTalk is now propagated throughout the world, not only students but also immigrants in Boston are able to reach their families and friends in Korea more frequently and easily.
Moreover, there is a 'voice filter' system in VoiceTalk, which allows a user to change the voice, and this is expected to make the live chat system much more popular. It must be very interesting to hear one's voice altered to an alien or a devil while talking on the phone.
However there is one problem that has not been solved, which is that the KaokaoTalk users in Korea cannot make calls to the users in overseas countries. The Kaokao Corporation is having difficulty solving the issue because the mobile companies in Korea are strongly resisting, since they are afraid to experience diminished profits.
The corporation also has to deal with the problems of losing service quality and experiencing heavy traffic of the wireless network because the most of its users are residing in Korea.
However, when foreign users are in Korea, they can send and receive calls.
Many free call applications were released after 2010 with the increase of smartphone users, before KaokaoTalk was released. 'Tango' and 'Viber' are the most popular free call applications. These allow the users to make calls not only with wi-fi but also with 3G or 4G.
Also, one of the most popular search portal websites, Naver, launched a free message application, 'Line' for smartphones, but it is expected to proliferate slowly due to the fact that 20-25% of the current KaKaotalk users, 46 million, are in foreign countries.
Furthermore, the KaKao Corporation has been examining new plans for multilateral calls and a video chat system.
ⓒ 보스톤코리아(http://www.bostonkorea.com), 무단전재 및 재배포 금지