AT&T Jumps on the iPhone Wi-Fi Calling Bandwagon

by Istvan Fekete on August 10, 2015

As Apple rolled out the fifth beta of its upcoming mobile operating system, iOS 9, beta testers immediately noticed a new option available for US-based iPhone owners: AT&T supports Apple’s Wi-Fi calling service. As such, Apple’s Wi-Fi calling service will be supported by three US carriers when iOS 9 launches this fall: T-Mobile (which began supporting it last year), Sprint (which joined the line in April), and now AT&T. Verizon is silent on the matter.

When asked about the new service, AT&T spokesman Steve Schwadron told FierceWireless: “We view Wi-Fi calling, which we plan to launch in 2015, as a complement to our great network coverage. AT&T has the nation’s most reliable 4G LTE network and strongest 4G LTE signal, covering nearly 310 million Americans.” Schwadron did not provide details.

AT&T reiterated its plans to support Wi-Fi calling in an FCC filing earlier last month, noting that Verizon and AT&T are shifting to VoLTE (Voice over Long Term Evolution technology), and that T-Mobile and Sprint have “deployed and are widely advertising Wi-Fi calling across their networks,” and that “AT&T hopes to begin to offer its own Wi-Fi calling service later in 2015.”

Now that three of the major players in the US wireless landscape have announced support for Apple’s Wi-Fi calling service, all eyes are on Verizon, which is missing from the list. When asked about such plans, Verizon spokesman Chuck Hamby reiterated the company’s earlier statement but declined to go into details: “We’ve previously said we’d support Wi-Fi calling this year, and nothing has changed in that regard. We’re just not ready to speak to specific devices yet.”

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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