Making phone calls and browsing the web on your mobile while overseas is like bending over and letting mobile carriers rape you through your wallet. But if you’re travelling to the US or the UK, there’s now a company that allows you to avoid the inevitable lubing up of your credit card before you travel.
Called Tru, the company offers local pricing for calls, texts and data when travelling to either the UK or the US, all on a single SIM card. It can do this thanks to the SIM itself, which can be assigned with a local number in each country that Tru operates. That means that no matter which Tru supported country you're in, contacts from other Tru supported countries can call you for the cost of a local call, and you can receive the call without having to pay international roaming fees.
What's better is that it translates over to data as well. In the UK, you pay 15c per MB, while in the US the rate is 35c per MB. Compared to the going rate of $15 per MB, that's an entirely affordable - although not quite brilliant - price.
The whole thing is a prepaid solution locally using the Optus network, although there are postpaid business plans available too. At the moment, it's only Australia, the UK and US that are available, but the company has plans to roll out to over 20 countries by the end of the year, with Spain, the Netherlands and Hong Kong next up and France Italy and Germany to follow after that.
The SIM costs $30 up front, which includes the SIM and $15 worth of credit. You'll need to pony up an extra $8 a month to get a local number for each Tru supported country as well, and at the moment you can only port your US or UK number to the SIM, although it's surely only a matter of time before you can port an AU number as well.
Without a doubt, this is the best global roaming solution on offer. If only it was available before CES...