Early this morning, the Line2 app, an iPhone application developed by a company called Toktumi, rocketed up the charts, likely thanks to an enthusiastic write-up by the New York Times columnist David Pogue. But a couple of hours ago – just as everyone in America scrambled to try out Line2 – the app vanished from Apple iTunes. Did Apple yank Toktumi Line2 from the store?
Nope. According to Peter Sisson, the founder of Toktumi, Line2 recently came under a blistering denial-of-service attack, the same kind of crippling cyber scam that has brought down a handful of popular sites in the past. Mr. Sisson told Henry McCracken of Technologizer that he made the executive decision to take Line2 offline – that way thousands of consumers won't have a bad first experience with the much-buzzed-about app.
In a way, of course, folks could be forgiven for thinking that it was Apple that yanked Line2, and not Toktumi itself. (If you're confused about the name of the company, try saying Toktumi out loud.) For months, Apple and Google fought over the Google Voice app, a VOiP program which allows users to circumvent the AT&T network. Eventually, Google just developed a version that worked on the iPhone's Safari browser.
Toktumi's Line2 app works similarly: For $0.99, you get a second phone number, complete with a second voice mail system and contacts list. More important, Line2 allows you to place calls over a Wi-Fi connection, giving you an out when good ol' AT&T dropped-call syndrome starts kicking in. Toktumi is marketing Line2 mostly as a business solution, but there's no reason why the app wouldn't work just as nicely for the lay user.