Safaricom rolls out 'reverse call' feature

Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore. [Standard]

You do not have to have money to make that urgent call from your mobile phone.

Safaricom has introduced a reverse call feature that allows its clients to make calls on zero-airtime.

The service enables a caller to transfer the cost of a call to the receiver by adding ‘#’ before the number they are calling.

For instance, to transfer the cost of the call to 0722000000, a customer will dial #0722000000.

The service is bound to increase voice traffic for the communication service provider at a time when the bulk of its income is coming from M-Pesa and data revenue.

“At Safaricom, we maintain our commitment to always provide our customers with relevant products in line with their needs,” said Sylvia Mulinge, Safaricom's Chief Customer Officer.

“This innovation is in line with this commitment and has been tailored to mirror the relationships between our customers with the goal of empowering them to always remain connected with their loved ones,” she said.

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The person receiving a reverse call request will receive the caller's details on the phone screen just like a normal call. But once they pick the call, they will receive a voice prompt asking them to press 1 to accept  the call and its costs or 2 to reject it.

The cost of the call will be equivalent to the receiver’s normal call cost. 

The service is however available on calls within the Safaricom network and will not be applicable for off-net, roaming and international calls. 

The reverse call feature comes on the back of the company’s similar products such as 'Please Call Me' that enables consumers to send five free messages to other customers requesting for a call back. 

Reverse call was a popular service in the past when fixed-line phones were the primary mode of communication before the advent of mobile phones.

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Safaricom CEO Bob CollymoreSylvia Mulinge