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PhoneFree.com Goes More Global

Formerly offering fee-based global PC-to-phone calls, PhoneFree.com Tuesday opened up its calling range with a new system that allows users to connect two phones from anywhere in the world.

Best known for its ability to enable long distance PC-to-phone calling or PC-to-PC calls, the firm will direct its new Global WebOperator™ service through iDial Networks, an application service provider that focuses on the latest in communications technology.

The service works similar to someone trying to use a live operator to make a call. Members can visit the PhoneFree.com TalkShop communications store and login with a Global WebOperator ID and password to initiate the call. The Global WebOperator system will call both users' phones and automatically connect both parties at international rates that are cheaper than those of traditional phone companies.

Jan Robert Horsfall, president and chief executive officer of PhoneFree.com, said Tuesday's move is in line with his firm's strategy to offer customers the opportunity to save money on their phone bills. He noted that Global WebOperator phone allows people to call anywhere in the world with no "access charges, hidden fees or surcharges."

So how does PhoneFree.com make money then?

Because most of the firm's revenue is generated from products, equipment, and services, the firm can offer free PC-to-Phone calling to and within the U.S., free PC-to-PC calling anywhere in the world and fee-based global PC-to-Phone.

PhoneFree.com, which competes with Dialpad Inc. and giant Net2Phone in the multimedia telecommunications space, is a portfolio company of eVentures Group and is led by a group by former members of Lycos' marketing team, including Horsfall.

In October, PhoneFree.com made a major push by overhauling its Web site and releasing version 7.0 of its multimedia communications software.