XPATFONE

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BST
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Jul 10, 2013 3:29 pm

XPATFONE

Postby BST » Thu Nov 18, 2021 8:12 pm

After ongoing struggles with Virgin, I decided to do some Googling and came across a company/service called Xpatfone. It appears you keep your UK phone number and pay £8.99 a month through Xpatfone for unlimited calls and texts to the UK. The receiver sees your phone number as normal.The biggy is verification codes work through Xpatfone apparently. It sounds similar to WhatsApp in that you download an app and everything is done through the app. Just wondered is anyone was using it?

Kilkis
Posts: 13079
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: XPATFONE

Postby Kilkis » Thu Nov 18, 2021 10:22 pm

It sounds good if you want to make a lot of phone calls to the UK. Personally I need a UK number for two reasons: 1 to make phone calls when I am in the UK, i.e. about 4 weeks per year, and 2 to receive OTPs from my UK bank. For long phone calls to family in the UK I prefer to use Skype which is free. For the odd short call I get enough minutes free as part of my broadband contract. I don't really want to pay £8.99 per month just to get the odd OTP. I don't understand why UK banks cannot use other methods of delivering OTPs or an OTP generator?

On Alpha bank you can opt to receive them via Viber which is similar to WhatsApp so if you have internet access it should work. I've not tried it, because Alpha bank's SMS service seems to be very good. At least Lloyds offer a sort of reverse OTP where they put the OTP on the screen, phone you on a number that you can select and then you say or key in the OTP. With Santander its an SMS to a UK number or...nothing and, at least with a Virgin SIM, it never arrives. Now Virgin are scrapping all PAYG contracts as of January. I'm in the process of changing to 3. I'll report back how that works out.

Warwick

BST
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Jul 10, 2013 3:29 pm

Re: XPATFONE

Postby BST » Fri Nov 19, 2021 3:58 pm

I'm in a similar position to you Warwick. I use WhatsApp for virtually every UK phone call when I'm here but there are always the occasional "official" phone calls to make or calls to businesses in connection with our UK house. I believe Barclays aren't happy with foreign mobiles so I need a reliable alternative. I am sick to death of Virgin and understand theres always a possibility that other providers will start to impose the roaming/fair use policies even though I don't use my UK phone for data.

I put a post on FB British in Greece and 3 people posted to say they use Xpatfone with no complaints so I think it's worth a try. The app it works through gets a 4.6 rating on Google Play and the reviews are very positive. There were people who said they were on 3 and OK so far! Good luck with your change.

Kilkis
Posts: 13079
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: XPATFONE

Postby Kilkis » Fri Nov 19, 2021 10:57 pm

BST wrote:...I am sick to death of Virgin...


I agree. I stuck with Virgin for a long time because it was one of the few companies that would keep the SIM active even if you didn't top up regularly or even use it for long periods. I never experienced a problem with not using it in the UK even for over 1 year. I had my Virgin SIM registered with both Santander and Lloyds for OTPs. Originally they both worked perfectly. Over time the service deteriorated. The OTP from Lloyds always arrived but often outside the allowed time period. Often it worked OK at weekends but after a time that became too long as well. At least with Lloyds I had alternatives. Santander reached a point where the OTP would not arrive at all. I would phone a friend in the UK and get them to send me an SMS to check it was working. The SMS would arrive within a couple of seconds of them sending it. I would then try to do a banking transaction and the OTP would simply not arrive. With Santander there was no alternative.

I have been meaning to change for a long time but kept putting it off because it is a lot easier to do it while you are in the UK as you have to activate the new SIM in your phone in the UK. I kept expecting to have a trip back in the near future but unfortunately visits to the UK just kept getting pushed back because of COVID. The final straw was an SMS from Virgin telling me that they are scrapping PAYG altogether in January so I have now bitten the bullet. I can get everything delivered to my son's house but he is not very keen on putting the SIM in his phone to activate it as he needs it constantly so I have ordered a cheap phone for him to do it.

I'll also try to transfer the number but I expect problems with that. I created a telephone password many years ago while I was in a Virgin mobile shop ordering a new SIM. I didn't keep a record and I didn't need to use it for years so I cannot remember it exactly. Now I will probably need it to get a PAC and based on previous experience there is no way round not knowing it. With online logging on you can usually click a "Cannot remember" box and they send you an email to reset the password. There does not seem to be any equivalent system with telephone passwords.

Warwick

evansmr1
Posts: 394
Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2010 3:00 pm
Location: Pirgos, Kalo Horio,

Re: XPATFONE

Postby evansmr1 » Sat Nov 20, 2021 12:57 pm

I do not understand why a UK registered Mobile is required for OTP's

My UK Bank is NatWest and they happily send OTP's to my Greek Registered Mobile, also have called me a couple of times, at my request, on my Mobile.
Mike
=============
Sic parvis magna

Kilkis
Posts: 13079
Joined: Sat Apr 21, 2007 3:58 pm
Location: Near Chania

Re: XPATFONE

Postby Kilkis » Sat Nov 20, 2021 1:46 pm

evansmr1 wrote:I do not understand why a UK registered Mobile is required for OTP's

My UK Bank is NatWest and they happily send OTP's to my Greek Registered Mobile, also have called me a couple of times, at my request, on my Mobile.


Who can fathom the mysteries of banking. Lloyds have my Greek mobile and landline registered but don't send OTPs to the mobile. I suspect that their system cannot recognise it as a mobile number even though in my settings it is logged as a mobile. They are probably looking for an 07? Instead they put an OTP on my PC page then they phone me on either phone, depending on which one I choose, and I say or punch in the OTP that is on the screen. In reality punching it in usually doesn't work so I tend to stick to saying it, which sometimes isn't recognised. They used to have my UK Virgin mobile registered but because it caused so many problems I got them to remove it. Santander seem to insist on only using a UK mobile number.

Warwick

bobscott
Posts: 2987
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: XPATFONE

Postby bobscott » Thu Nov 25, 2021 10:31 am

evansmr1 wrote:I do not understand why a UK registered Mobile is required for OTP's

My UK Bank is NatWest and they happily send OTP's to my Greek Registered Mobile, also have called me a couple of times, at my request, on my Mobile.


MBNA use my Greek-registered iphone with no problem when sending OTP.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

bobscott
Posts: 2987
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: XPATFONE

Postby bobscott » Thu Nov 25, 2021 10:37 am

For landline calls to UK I use VOIP Connect (was called VOIP Discount) from my laptop (or wife's PC). I pay them €10 and immediately get 100 days of free landine calls to most places in the world. Once that 100 days expires, I am charged (using my initial deposit of €10) at the rate of €0.015 per minute so it takes quite a lot of minutes to eat up my deposit. Nearing the end of my 'credit' I just renew it again for €10 and start the cyle of 100 free days all over again. €.20 a year seems a good bargain to me. Bob
https://www.voipdiscount.com/dashboard
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

bobscott
Posts: 2987
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: XPATFONE

Postby bobscott » Thu Nov 25, 2021 10:38 am

bobscott wrote:For landline calls to UK I use VOIP Connect (was called VOIP Discount) from my laptop (or wife's PC). I pay them €10 and immediately get 100 days of free landine calls to most places in the world. Once that 100 days expires, I am charged (using my initial deposit of €10) at the rate of €0.015 per minute so it takes quite a lot of minutes to eat up my deposit. Nearing the end of my 'credit' I just renew it again for €10 and start the cyle of 100 free days all over again. €20 a year seems a good bargain to me. Bob
https://www.voipdiscount.com/dashboard
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!


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