Christmas Present for friends in a LDR
December 23, 2013 10:46 AM   Subscribe

Because of work, my very good friend and her husband live on two different continents (she in Asia, he in North America) and see each other every couple of months. I'm wondering if there are any apps or digital subscriptions that they can share/use together around $25 that might make a good Christmas gift for both?

They both have iPhones, iPads, and laptops, and they communicate regularly with Skype and Facetime. They are both reasonably comfortable with technology, but she would not be happy with anything too complicated. I don't think they are into gaming. They both like to read, like music, like to drink and are very social. All ideas are welcome, the more specific the better.
posted by Pineapplicious to Technology (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know if this rises quite to the level of a Christmas gift (I think it's $2), but I bet they'd be excited to learn about Whatsapp. It's an app that allows you to text anyone, anywhere for free (if they also have the app). So they wouldn't have to wait to get on Wifi to Facetime and would be able to send each other quick texts easily and for free. I use it to communicate with a friend in England - it's really great.
posted by leitmotif at 11:34 AM on December 23, 2013

Leitmotif, this is exactly the kind of thing I'm thinking of. If people have suggestions for other small (in terms of price) things, I'll put together a bunch.
posted by Pineapplicious at 11:47 AM on December 23, 2013

Similarly, there's another app I've recently started using called Line. As long as you both have the (free) app, it lets you call and text anywhere in the world for free. It's big in Asia.
posted by madonna of the unloved at 10:35 PM on December 23, 2013

This is a really thoughtful gift!

Seconding Whatsapp for both of them. My partner and I (long-distance) use it to chat throughout the day and we can send photos, voice/audio clips, GPS locations, videos, etc. for free. It's the greatest app!

Similar to Line (which is unreliable where I live), there's an app called FreePP. It's free to make calls between FreePP users. Sometimes if my partner and I are finding our Skype connection (on our phones) a little spotty, we switch to FreePP as an alternate. You don't have to be logged in to FreePP, so if I forget to sign in to Skype on my phone, my partner can call me as if he were just making a regular phone call.

Depending on where your friends live and where you live/what's available to you, you can also get one/both of them emergency phone cards. I don't know if that's practical given their locations or yours, but I keep a phone card in my wallet so that if I can't get on the internet for some reason (traveling, mostly), I can still call my SO without paying a fortune. Again, this will really depend on what kind of phone cards are available to you, but it's an option.
posted by gursky at 1:55 AM on December 24, 2013

I second the marvelous "whatsapp" application. Our family is scattered all over the world. All of us post comments, videos, pictures, links, and voice messages every day. Our grandson and granddaughter, both a year old, have learned to recognize us on whatsapp!
posted by ragtimepiano at 12:29 PM on December 24, 2013

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