Zimbabwean converged services operator Africom has launched a new voice-over-internet protocol (VoIP) application called ‘Guroo’, the Zimbabwe Independent reports. According to the article, users of Guroo are not required to change their current mobile number, as they will be assigned a separate Guroo number, and unlike other VoIP applications like Skype, subscribers will be allowed to call non-Guroo-registered numbers (without signing up for an additional charged service). Calls to Guroo numbers will be priced at USD0.06 per minute, while other calls will be charged at USD0.12 per minute (compared to current standard mobile call tariffs for Zimbabwean users of USD0.23 per minute, the Independent notes). Call prices are irrespective of geographic location. Zimbabwean technology website TechZim adds that the Guroo call charges are exactly the same as Africom’s existing on-net and off-net calls on its CDMA-based wireless network in Harare and other cities. Africom’s CEO Rudo Mudavanhu commented on the Guroo launch: ‘After close to 18 months of working on the product, we are glad to finally announce that we are now offering a flagship product not just for the Zimbabwean market but [the] world, this is [a] real and affordable VoIP service.’
According to its website (www.guro-o.com), Guroo is an African-led cross-platform voice service that can run on most mobile device and computer operating systems including Android, Apple iOS/MAC OSx, and Windows. Africom is spearheading the marketing of the Guroo application in Zimbabwe; the fibre-optic/CDMA/IP network operator is officially a local reseller for Guroo, which has also been launched in South Africa, and is available for download in other countries. A company source told TechZim that Africom does not own Guroo, but that it is within the same holding group.