It is more than ten days now since Econet disconnected Telecel and the dispute still rages on with no clear end in sight as both the warring parties and the regulator POTRAZ have been mum on details about how the dispute is being solved if is being solved at all. This sort of left me in limbo since I have a significant number of friends and acquaintances who use Telecel. If you are like me in that regard or if you are a Telecel user stuck in the midst of the dispute then I am happy to recommend Africom’s Guroo.
Reasons you might want to use Guroo
- There are no interconnection disputes to worry about, you can make calls to all networks including Econet and Telecel.
- Joining the service is free; no PBX,SIM or Handset required.
- You can make cheaper calls; calls to other networks cost $0.12 per minute.
- You can make calls as long as you have an internet connection even if there is no ordinary cellular network coverage e.g. remote estates like Katiyo who use VSAT for internet in areas where cellular network coverage is patchy at best.
- You do not have to worry about SIM registration delays or queues; the entire process can be completed online.
- All your relatives in diaspora can call you using Guroo at local rates. Up until now VoIP calls to Zimbabwe were rather expensive with some services charging over a dollar per minute.
- To take advantage of Africom’s $10 per month fixed charge when making Africom to Africom calls.
- To have a separate number for business.
NB A detailed how to can be found on the Guroo website here. However there are several caveats which are not mentioned.
- In order to register the Guroo number that you have been allocated successfully you will have to enter the code that is sent to the cell number you entered during the signup process. I was only able to receive this code when using an Africom number. So you might need to ask a friend who already has an Africom number to complete the signup process for you.
- After completing the registration process and configuring the Xlite software you can purchase airtime online using a credit card or Paypal here. The recharge pin will be sent to your email inbox. To recharge go to this page click Recharge and input your phone number and recharge pin.
- It appears you cannot register for the service if you either do not have or know someone with an Africom number or perhaps I was just having bad luck.
- The given help numbers do not seem to be working or perhaps my bad luck extended to that too.
- You cannot transfer airtime from your regular Africom products.
- Although the service is not bandwidth intensive you still need an internet connection to use it.
When all is said and done the odds favour Guroo. It works whether you have a routable IP address or not and I found its bandwidth consumption to be reasonable.Setting up Guroo on your SOHO as a business number could be just the thing small businesses wanted; it’s free to join the service and leaves you to spent your hard earned cash elsewhere. For those of us ordinary folk Guroo gives us the opportunity to communicate with our loved ones on all networks. I did not use the smartphone version of the service so I would not be commenting on it.