It must be tough for carriers to make an extra dime these days with upstart apps offering customers for free what network operators want to charge for. With today's announcement that T-Mobile now supports the StarStar Me app, it's clear that TMO feels the heat.
StarStar Me essentially is a way for smartphone owners, both Android and iOS, to create one virtual phone number or even a short user name to link with their existing mobile account. According to the creators of StarStar Me, all people have to do to reach you is tap a double asterisk then your personal name or number. For example punching "**CHLOE" or "**24563" would be all it takes to buzz your cell phone. You also have the option to view a visual record of calls, block unwanted numbers, and have automatic text alerts sent when you're trying to keep a low profile.
Of course there's a catch. The service costs an additional $2.99 on top of your voice and data plan. Also, you can accomplish many of these slick digital telephony tricks using Google Voice's free service and mobile software, at least you used to.
It has been my recent experience that Google Voice has been blocked totally or partially from operating by the carriers themselves. As someone who tends to swap and test drive new phones at least once a week, this apparent policy is a major pain. For consumers though who may be railroaded into paying for a service they should be able to get for free, well that's an insult.
If you're curious about how StarStar Me works, however, take a gander at the company's official marketing video.