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Keeping in touch while living in Indonesia

Hello everyone,

What are the best ways you've found for keeping in touch with friends and family back home while living in Indonesia? How frequently do you stay in touch with loved ones?

Are there local equivalents to common instant messaging and online video calling services that you prefer or are more widely used?

If there is a sizeable time difference, how do you manage this?

Do you make international phone calls from a landline or mobile phone from Indonesia? What do you think of the cost?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

Landlines are pretty much a dead duck outside business use in Indonesia. Many people still have them but I don't know anyone who bothers with one.
You can make international calls using them but the old wartel (Shops you can make a telephone call from) have all but disappeared. There might be a few in places with poor or no internet access but I haven't seen one for several years.

Mobile telephone services used to have prefix numbers for international calls but I have no idea if these are still available.

Smartphone based services are the thing here, Whatsapp being the biggest player as it allows calls to anyone in the world with the same app, that including video calls. Messaging services are quick easy and free.

Google hangouts also does the job, that allowing free calls to US and Canadian landlines free of charge. You have to pay for some calls but most are free.
(Also available on PC)

Skype is very handy as you can dial pretty much anywhere in the world cheaply but it has a further advantage of being able to have a landline connection for people in other countries to call you. I have a UK (Sheffield) number that rings in Indonesia or goes to an answerphone if I'm not available.
That service has been handy on more than one occasion.
(Also available on PC)

Most cities and smaller towns in Java have internet fast enough to run at least voice calls, video being possible in many places but more restricted. Once you're in the middle of nowhere, that changes.
You can experience a lag on occasion if your interlocutor is half way around the world but the issue isn't that big a problem and redialling generally cures that or a duff connection.

I use Google Duo and Whatapps

tiganasfx :

I use Google Duo and Whatapps

I think Whatsapp is pretty much the standard in Indonesia but I have never used Duo.
Perhaps you could tell us why it's handy and what advantages it has over other calling apps.
Cheers,
Fred

SKYPE.  I used it for the 4 years I recently spent in Costa Rica. Works like a charm and cheap.

CactusJoe44 :

SKYPE.  I used it for the 4 years I recently spent in Costa Rica. Works like a charm and cheap.

That's the winner when it comes to contacting non tech people or making general calls to whoever.
Their skype number is very handy, meaning people who want to call you can dial what appears to be a local number rather than an international call that would be expensive and a cause of trepidation for many.
My UK number starts 0114, a Sheffield area dialling code that no one has the slightest worry about calling as it looks pretty much like a normal UK landline.

That's why Skype is my preferred app at the moment but that will change in the future as the reasons for needing that number will disappear soon.

Whatsapp, Facebook messenger both with or without video calling. Line for some and Google hangouts for others.

That's pretty much it.

Emails of course.

SMS is pretty much dead here except for spammers.
I send the odd one and get a real one from time to time but the vast majority tell me about special offers on whatever.
I noticed someone with a BBM the other day, the first one I've seen in ages.

Fred,

Well Google Duo is just a simple app for 1 to 1 video calls.

it has only one purpose and does it quite well. Video and sound quality are good and encrypted too.

tiganasfx :

Fred,

Well Google Duo is just a simple app for 1 to 1 video calls.

it has only one purpose and does it quite well. Video and sound quality are good and encrypted too.

It turns out it's a standard app on new Samsung phones to I activated it.
Seems I have 5 active contacts but I can't remember who one of them is and I don't speak to the others as I hardly know them.
Seems Google has a better memory than I. :D

Lol  :D :D

I do everything with Whatsapp. Normal just messages on dayly base and now and then video talk. Works fine. 6 HOURS  TIME DIFFRENCE NO PROBLEM.

Line,  whatsapp, Viber, FB messenger..  Basically all the social apps.

I just use f/book...free...talk...video..in Australia ATM..AND LAST NITE TALK AND video to Bali...to Wife,,good connection..never phone much..too expensive..messages are left.so doesn/t matter if either of you are out//cheers/

You got it all buddy only adding for me i also use FaceTime as the video quality is high
Time difference no problem as i call early in the day and still evening back in Canada

What are the best ways you've found for keeping in touch with friends and family back home while living in Indonesia? How frequently do you stay in touch with loved ones?
I use WhatsApp, Vonage and MagicJack. Used to be Skype, but now I use Skype only for business screen sharing/presentations.

If there is a sizeable time difference, how do you manage this?
Time difference with US Pacific is -14/-15. Catch them in the morning or in the evening. Example: When time diff is -14, I make calls either 8AM WIB = 6PM PT or 10PM WIB = 8AM PT or thereabouts.

Do you make international phone calls from a landline or mobile phone from Indonesia? What do you think of the cost?
All international calls made using Vonage since it has free unlimited calls to landlines and cellphones for many countries I make frequent calls to/from, including Indonesia, Singapore, India, Japan, Hong Kong, UK, etc. I even make Indonesia local landline calls using Vonage from Indonesia.
Device-wise: I can use traditional handset as though it's landline or use an App on my iPhone as though it's a cellphone - so I reckon it's a hybrid.
Cost-wise: Its a monthly flat rate. Since I have other business needs besides keeping in touch with friends and family, the cost is negligible.

Ask me again next year and the answer may change as technology continues to evolve and cost fluctuates with supply and demand... or I just wanted to try new technologies...

I've just posted a thread for this but I'll repeat it here.

http://www.thejakartapost.com/life/2017 … ation.html

Following the Communications and Information Ministry's regulation on mobile phone numbers, prepaid SIM card users are now required to register their numbers, starting from Oct. 31 to Feb. 28, 2018.

Assuming accurate reporting, this is how to do it.

Smartphone users with old numbers need to send their identity card number (NIK) and family card (KK) number via SMS to 4444.

As for foreigners, Tribun Jogja reported that they can send their passport number and temporary stay permit (KITAS) or permanent stay permit (KITAP) number via SMS to 4444.

Alternatively, prepaid SIM card holders can also register via their operators’ websites.

It seems we have until Feb 2018 to get this done or the card will be deactivated.

I mainly use WhatsApp, email and for $15 CAN a year I can phone anyone in North America (their cell phone or landline) by my Magic Jack App (via Wifi).  I use this way a lot to phone my bank, credit card companies, government agencies, etc.).  I keep in touch with friends several times a week.

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