Disclosure: This is sponsored content. As an influencer I am being compensated to test out and review the Prip app. All opinions expressed within are my own.
Last week I posted about the Prip app, relatively new to the U.S. market but with familiar Nextel technology. As I mentioned in my post, I noticed that there were a lot of users in Mexico who were using the app. One reader messaged me and said that he uses the app with his colleagues and it helps him to avoid annoying roaming fees.
He lives in Mexico.
Fortunately for us here in the states, the cellular communications marketplace is extremely competitive and we worry less and less about roaming charges. On a day-to-day usage, I don’t know how valuable Prip would be to the average U.S. customer. The niche user such as an emergency worker would find it valuable but outside of that group, it doesn’t seem as obvious.
That being said, there are instances in which I think the Prip app can be extremely useful for U.S. consumers: when we are traveling and subject to international cell carriers and their fees.
- Cruise Ships: My husband and I take our walkie talkies with us when we cruise so that we can keep in touch with each other’s whereabouts while we’re on the ship. It’s easy, only takes batteries and free. Limitations: Ships are huge and if you’re on opposite ends and don’t have enough mHz, you won’t hear each other. As long as we’re on the ship’s WiFi, we can continue to use our cell phones with the Prip app and not carry an extra device.
- Traveling Abroad: I refuse to purchase an expensive international cell phone plan for short jousts outside the country. These plans can be ridiculously expensive. The same way I use a WiFi connection to talk for Free on FaceTime or iChat with another iPhone user, I can use Prip with another Prip user. Limitations: I need to be somewhere that I can jump on a connection for free. This tends to be tricky in Europe. There aren’t as many open and FREE WiFi connections as we have here in the states.
- Local Travel: I’ve used Prip on my 3G while I’ve been traveling locally. It’s worked sporadically but I have been able to get messages through and receive them as well. Limitations: If you’re in an area where the cell reception is weak, Prip will absolutely not work for you. You will have to find a WiFi connection to talk.
The app is really useful for travel but it also has a couple of shortcomings.
- One of the issues I have with the app is that if the other Prip user doesn’t have it open in order for me to be able to “prip” them, I get a “User not reachable. Dismiss.” message.
- The download process for the app is a little clumsy. Many of us Android and iPhone users go through only one or two steps to download an app to our phone. We hit the “Install” button (in the App Store), a message comes up from iTunes asking us to Verify with our password and then the app is downloaded. With Prip, first you have to create an account through a separate landing page complete with creating a username, then you go to Google Play or the App Store and download the app and THEN plug in your username. If people find the app straight from Google Play and the app Store, they maybe confused that they need to go to prip.me first before being able to use the app. The process needs to be simplified.