Etisalat launches free app for voice and video calls

Etisalat UAE, branded as etisalat by e&, announced the launch of GoChat Messenger, an all-in-one free voice and video calling app, on July 1.

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UAE’s biggest telecommunications operator said GoChat Messenger is a global application that can be downloaded by anyone worldwide, only requiring a mobile number for registration.

The GoChat service is available for download on Android and iOS platforms and will also allow UAE users to remit money, pay bills, play games, order food, and receive news updates, the company said in a statement to the media.

Users can also access Smiles vouchers deals and home services such as PCR testing, home cleaning and salon services, making it a comprehensive communications platform.

“GoChat Messenger is the latest addition to the suite of products and services that will benefit customers in the face of the ever-growing need for amplified connectivity in a post-pandemic era,” read the statement.

It added, “Since the pandemic, the market witnessed an increase in penetration and popularity for internet calling apps. The launch follows e&’s recent unveiling of ‘etisalat by e&’ as the new brand identity for Etisalat UAE.” The company changed its brand identity to e& on February 23 this year.

“The app is in line with the overall vision of etisalat by e& to empower customers with seamless digital applications, enabling experiences that enhance their digital lifestyles,” it said.

etisalat would continue to offer other alternative internet calling platforms, including Botim, C’Me, HiU, and Voico in the UAE, its website said. However, the company did not answer queries about making iPhone’s FaceTime or Meta’s WhatsApp VoIP (voice over Internet Protocol) calls accessible to UAE users.

Currently, most UAE residents and visitors use platforms such as Zoom, Google Meets, and Microsoft Teams for business and education communications as the need for VoIP calls skyrocketed post-pandemic. The global VoIP market is estimated to reach US$ 255 billion by 2032, growing at a CAGR of 9.7 per cent over the forecast period of 2022-2032, according to a Future Market Insights report.

The app has several unique features, including:

  • International and local money transfers, including bill payments through eWallet
  • Users can access home services including home cleaning, PCR at home, a salon at home as well gifting services
  • Avail selected Smiles vouchers and deals through GoChat messenger
  • Remain up to date with the latest news and events in the country
  • Free-to-play games as an embedded feature