Truphone has announced that it's lowered the rate per minute, text or megabyte of data from 17 to 9 cents in the "Truphone Countries" which are the UK, US, Australia, Hong Kong, Netherlands, Germany, Poland and Spain). Incoming calls and texts are free in all the Truphone countries, including the US. The 9¢ rate applies to calls and texts within the Truphone countries as well as between two Truphone countries.
A Truphone SIM works in 66 countries in all. Rates are higher outside of the Truphone countries but are still lower than most operator's international roaming rates.
SIMs cost $29.99 which seems steep but they do come with $15 in call credit. There's no requirement to top up regularly, pay as you go credit never expires as long as you make a call, send a text or use some data at least every 90 days.
In the US Truphone defaults to the T-Mobile network but will use AT&T as well as some regional operators if T-Mobile service isn't available or you manually select a different operator in your phone's network settings. 3G data is available on T-Mobile but on AT&T data is limited to 2G.
In the past, Truphone would round up each data session to 100 KB. Smartphones make frequent connections to keep email, calendar, contacts, IM and social networks current. These connections are typically only a few KB's each but the rounding caused them to be charged as 100 KB or 1.7¢ each resulting in much higher than expected charges. However, according to Truphone and confirmed by a PrepaidPhoneNews reader and Truphone user, this isn't the case anymore. Truphone is now rounding sessions to 1KB (or about 0.09¢) and accumulating small sessions until they add up to a full penny.
The new pricing makes Truphone a good choice for international travelers who don't want to waste time finding a local SIM in every county they visit. In Truphone countries, 9¢ per minute, text or MB can even be less than what local operators charge, particularly for calls back to the US or another Truphone country. Truphone also looks like a good deal for light use strictly within the US, particularly if you want coverage just about everywhere using a combination of T-Mobile, AT&T and local operators.