Three Wholesale, the business-to-business arm of Three UK, has partnered with an ‘Over The Top’ service to provide mobile numbers without a physical SIM card. It’s the first time Three Wholesale has powered an OTT service provider.
The Nextplus app from California-based textPlus allows customers to send and receive text messages and voice calls via a virtual mobile number. It’s capable of using WiFi connections and even works on non-telephony devices such as tablets.
Many OTT services can only be used for communication with other people who have the same app installed. However, the use of a conventional mobile telephone number means that Nextplus customers can communicate with ‘off-app’ users.
Lynda Burton, Director of Three Wholesale, said “The Nextplus partnership is yet another example of how Three continues to challenge the market and disrupt traditional models of connectivity. OTT services are growing rapidly and services like two-way calling without a SIM card will open up new opportunities for the international and roaming markets in particular. Nextplus recognises this and its fresh approach to connectivity makes it an exciting partner for Three Wholesale.”
A text-only version of the Nextplus app is already available for Android and iOS users, with voice calling due to be added in the next few weeks. Unlimited texting is currently charged at 69p per day or £1.49 per week.