Voice Chat and Walkie Talkie applications are all the rage on Apple App Store these days. Last week, I reviewed CloudTalk Messenger, an iPhone app that lets you record a message and then choose Facebook/ Address Book contacts to whom this message should be sent. Blip.me is similar except its UI resembles more like a push-to-talk walkie-talkie and it works only for people on your contact list.
The underlying concept behind Blip.me and other similar apps is simple yet brilliant. Calls are intrusive and you’re never sure if the receiver is in a mood to talk or not. Text message are non-intrusive but it’s a hassle typing long messages. Apps such as Blip.me combine the best of both worlds – you can record a note in your voice and the receiver is notified about it. The best part about Blip.me is that it lets users send and receive free voice notes and free text messages.
I downloaded the Blip.me app and made an attempt to explore its voice & text capabilities. The user interface is simple and it made me feel as if I’m really using a push-to-talk walkie-talkie. There’s an option to switch between voice and text messages. When you want to record a voice note, the app notifies you to hold and speak. I liked the user interface for message threads which show individual messages in a chronological order. From a usability perspective, Blip.me scores a big thumbs-up.
All in all, Blip.me works pretty well as described. I’d like to see some more features though – ability to delete old messages and message threads, send voice notes to a group and integration with Facebook & Twitter.
Blip.me founders say sending or receiving your friend’s voice in a simple message can draw you closer. It makes the world a better, more connected place. I whole heartedly agree with that principle but since most new friendships are born on Facebook and Twitter these days, I hope blip.me adds a social media component sooner than later.
Blip.me app was developed by Abhay, Kevin, Sameer, and David in San Francisco, CA. It is a fun and useful way to turn your mobile phone into a push-to-talk walkie-talkie. And the best part – it’s free!
Gaurav Kheterpal is a seasoned technology professional with nearly a decade of experience in Mobile, Web 2.0 and Open Source Technologies. He's an Apple fanboy and an iPhone lover/ critic since it's early days. He loves exploring, developing and reviewing iPhone apps, as well as covering news stories about Apple and its products.