Bolt for Android is a dialler replacement with VoIP aspirations

That Bolt is launching first on Android speaks to the platform’s strong modularity: default applications can be altered, and routines easily replaced.

Bolt is what appears to be a simple dialler replacement, but the company has VoIP aspirations: calls to regular contacts made from the app will be routed through your carrier’s voice service; those made to other Bolt users will use a higher-quality VoIP codec, available at no charge to the user base.

While apps like Skype, Viber and Vonage allow this interaction today, all calls are routed through those providers’ servers, which means that regular local calls are treated the same as international ones. Bolt is different because it is simple: merely make a call and it will be correctly routed. Of course, this means that your friends and family must have Bolt installed, something that is unlikely to happen for a while — especially since the app doesn’t currently run on iOS. But the beauty of launching on Android is that an incoming Bolt call will take over the screen, much like a regular call; on iOS, unless the app itself is open, you’ll merely see a push notification.

Bolt’s creators also plan to implement a similar Hangouts-like messaging service, which will send regular texts to non-users and data-based messages to other Bolt users, similar to the way the iOS Messaging app detects if a user is running iMessage and turns it green or blue accordingly.

As a mere dialler replacement, Bolt detects your most-called contacts and brings their high-resolution photos to the fore, making it easier and faster to initiate the call.

[source]Google Play[/source][via]The Verge[/via]