SAN FRANCISCO--Certain apps floating around CTIA Fall 2010 are compelling enough to make it to the "download immediately" list. HeyWire is one such app, and of course, the fact that it's free certainly adds to the appeal.
The main purpose of HeyWire is to simplify real-time text communication across multiple messaging platforms and devices. It does this by gathering various modes of texting within a streamlined, easy-to-use interface, and then assigning personalized phone numbers to each user. Simply pull up the app on your device, and you can send a quick message to your phone book contacts, in addition to any friends available on a variety of instant-messaging clients, such as Facebook, AIM, and Yahoo Messenger. As an added bonus, you can also post updates to Twitter from within the app.
However, one of HeyWire's coolest features is that it lets people send--and receive--international texts for free. Since the app operates separately using either Wi-Fi or your data plan, the messages won't hit your cell phone bill individually (you may want to make sure you have a robust data plan, though). In the case of texts that are sent to another HeyWire user, the recipient won't be charged either. (Otherwise, he or she may be charged an incoming message fee by the service provider.)
The HeyWire app is currently available in iTunes for the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad, with additional apps planned for Android and BlackBerry devices going forward. In addition, the service will offer a Web element, which itself has a really neat, streamlined interface. It's currently in invite-only beta, but you can register for a chance to check it out early.