That joke about how your smartphone can "even make phone calls" is pretty cliche by now. But it raises the question: why hasn't anyone done anything to improve the state of voice calls on smart phones? After all, we're carrying around powerful computers in our pockets, but the technology involved in phone calls on smart phones hasn't evolved much.
One company trying to change that is Thrutu, an application that adds real-time features to Android calls. For example, using Thrutu you can send money with PayPal from within a call, share and view a photo or "doodle" on a shared screen. It adds a number of possibilities for collaboration using mobile phones.
Today, Thrutu announced that an API that will enable developers to build new features or integrate existing applications with its platform. You can request access here. Use the reference code RWW1 for priority access.
According to the company's announcement, the following features were all built with this API:
- PayPal - Send money over a phone call, instantly and securely. For example, when you call friends with a friendly reminder to pay you back, they can transfer the funds into your account instantly.
- Meet Me - Quickly find the best place to meet in person. Meet Me suggests venues, like cafes or movie theaters, that are located halfway between the two callers. On Thrutu, you can instantly discuss your options and agree upon the destination.
- Shared Search - Search and browse the web together. Either caller enters a word, and both can see and click on the results.
- Doodle - Share sketches in real-time. Doodle is also integrated with sharing locations and photos in Thrutu, so users can add a personal touch, such as an arrow on a map or a heart or smiley face to a shared photo.
- Coin Flip - Make decisions or settle arguments with the toss of a coin.
- Mood Ring - A cute way to let the other caller know how you're feeling - without having to use words.
- 15 Together and Tic Tac Toe - Play classic games across the Thrutu platform, all while continuing conversations, encouraging competitive banter.
- My Flickr and My Twitter - View pictures or read tweets together, with instant, shared access to Flickr and Twitter streams.
- Wish You Were Here? - Share your local weather forecast. Whether on a tropical vacation or snowed in at home, callers can gloat (or complain) about their current weather while on the phone.
What new features would you like to see built with this?