We know LINE already allows free calling to other LINE users, but what about those who don’t have the application downloaded? Sure, you can try to get them on board, but if they decline the invite, there will soon be another option for you in the form of a new data-based calling service being offered by the popular messaging service.
The service, which will be available initially in Japan, Mexico, the Philippines, Spain, Thailand, and the United States, will come with two plan options (at least in Japan): Pay-as-you-go and a 30 day plan, which LINE detailed at a company event.
Incoming calls via LINE will appear to the user as a normal phone call
Japanese users will be able to utilize the 30-day plan for 6.5 yen per minute for up to 60 minutes maxiumum for both landline and mobile phones. There’s also a mobile phone plan that will run 14 yen per minute and three yen to landlines. On smartphones, much like Skype for Windows Phone, the LINE incoming calls will look like regular phone calls.
As can be seen from its earlier Creators Market announcement and its ever expanding LINE Sticker Shop, the company has been looking to increase user engagement, especially after gaining two million new users during WhatsApp’s first outage since the Facebook acquisition.
Naver plans to offer the LINE calling service to 1,300,000 businesses and stores across Japan, as well as 100,000 free 100-yen LINE Call samples to existing users.