Android App Review: Fring

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From Wikipedia

Fring is an application that allows video chat on Android devices and iPhone 4.  The camera on the Backflip is such that when the keyboard is open it is technically a front facing camera so Fring will work for video chat.  Fring can be used for normal talking or IMing on various IM networks with devices on other platforms as well, but it does allow video chat from an iPhone 4 to a non-iPhone.

Fring does not use voice minutes, but does use the data plan or Wifi.

On the Backflip when the application is first opened it states that video chat is disabled due to device limitations.  That is easily remedied by going into the application settings and enabling video chat.  On my end with the Backflip connected to our 3G microcell and to Wifi the video chat was horribly laggy.  While talking in the same room to someone on an iPhone 4 it would take a while to hear him on my end but it seemed like he heard me right away.  I’m not sure if it is the hardware of the Backflip or if it is Android 1.5.

Fring is a pretty bad experience on the Backflip.  Unless you are in a situation where you can use a phone but not a laptop video chat is much better on computers with webcams.  I may use Fring in a pinch during a delay at an airport, but that may be about it.

I believe Skype is coming out with a similar product.  We’ll see how that goes.


  1. Fring has been banned by skype and you may want to do some homework before publishing this as at the time you went online with it, it had already been blocked for some 3 weeks already, you may want to look at nimbuzz instead

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