"If you have a phone number, now you're cool, even if you don't have a phone.
No one knows you don't have a phone." And the trade-offs are minor, especially by the standards of a 10-year-old.
She did, however, offer figures to illustrate the .
Verizon customers sent 180 billion text messages in the second quarter of 2010, versus 148 billion in the same quarter in 2009.
In Pinger's own surveying, it has found that about half of those using Textfree on an i Phone have reduced or turned off their texting plan.
But the company maintains that its business is still a net win for the carriers, who haven't yet called to complain.Click on a button below to learn more about Credit Card Safety, Game Safety & Etiquette, and Online Safety & Etiquette. There's also an online consciousness contract that you and your family can sign to help with awareness and behaviors online.Kids, of course, come in all varieties, and their interests run the gamut."If they actually look at the math, we are very net-positive for them," Woock said. "When your daughter makes a phone call to another person who has a cell phone, that person is going to pay for the minutes.Of the roughly 22 million messages Textfree sends out each day, about 14 million today are sent to paying phone customers. Now the carrier wins not just on texting, but on voice minutes too," he said.To text, she needs to be connected to Wi-Fi (which she says "is basically everywhere"), and she needs to deal with ads bannered across the bottom of the app.(She says she doesn't "even notice.") So my now-cool daughter, at the very least, is helping illustrate a trend among tweens who are turning their i Pods into texting devices.(AT&T charges i Phone users for unlimited texts and for 200.) The overall trend, however, shows how we're moving toward a future in which the type of communication--be it text, voice mail, phone calls, e-mail--won't matter."It will all be just a bunch of bits flowing," Golvin said.The handing out of phone numbers was part of Pinger's preannounced plan to start offering voice-calling options--"Textfree with Voice"--slated for a beta launch at the end of September.Users will have the option to pay for voice minutes, or they can earn minutes by doing things like downloading free apps, filling out surveys, or performing other tasks that don't seem to bother youth already accustomed to having their consumer habits tracked.