|Looks very much like the typical iPhone SMS app|
Well, turns out there's this awesome app, Global AQ Pro (or Lite), that can do all this. It even generates a dedicated phone number for buyers of the app. The numbers used are located in Antarctica, along with them penguins! This app also works on iPhones and the iPod Touch, but I only have it on the iPad.
Cost per SMS is ridiculously cheap, regardless where you send your message. Costs me a wee few cents -- or less than a few, what is it again, one point something € cents? -- to message anyone in China, the US or my next door neighbor in Oudenaarde, Belgium -- you get the picture... Buying Credits for messages is done in-app without hassle or anything, with the iTunes store guaranteeing security and discretion to the max.
Theoretically it can receive SMSs on the obnoxious Antarctica number too, if your recipient uses it from his/her end. Only problem, many operators (among whom mine too) won't deliver SMSs to the penguins -- I mean, the international telephone zone in Antarctica! Screw them, morons!
The iPad's growing larger by the minute... increasingly chewing my Macbook to obsoleteness.