Facebook "free calls" available from Aussie phones

Skype-like calls for Facebook friends

While everyone's attention has been focused on the launch of Facebook Home, the company behind the social network has slipped in an important update for Australians.

Spotted by the eagle eyes over at TechAU, an update to the Facebook Messenger app for iPhone and Android now includes the option to make voice over IP (VOIP) calls to friends in your Facebook contacts list.

Powerful feature, hidden icon

The feature is somewhat hidden though -- there is no flashing buttons or large telephone icons to indicate how you make these calls. Instead, you select a contact, press on the the information button (an 'i' icon), and if the person has the latest version installed you'll see a new button that says "free call".

Facebook Voice Chat launched as a beta in January for members in the US. With more than 1 billion people signed up to Facebook, a feature like this is bound to give stalwarts like Skype a serious run for their money.

And don't forget, if you have an Android phone and you want to give Facebook Home a try, you can download a modded version of the app via our earlier article. Just remember that this is not officially supported by Facebook before you begin.

Via TechAU