iOS 8 gets Wi-Fi Calling Support, T-Mobile Already On Board

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When iOS 8 launches this fall, it'll include a great feature that wasn't mentioned in Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference keynote event on Monday: Wi-Fi calling support. The feature lets Wi-Fi networks handle voice calls -- saving user's talk minutes -- and T-Mobile has already committed to let its iPhone customers join in.

Apple's Craig Federighi shows off iOS 8 features at WWDCApple's Craig Federighi shows off iOS 8 features at WWDC

"With the news coming out of Apple's keynote today that Wi-Fi Calling will be enabled with iOS 8 – I'm excited to welcome our iPhone customers to the convenience and ease of T-Mobile Wi-Fi Calling as well," said T-Mobile Chief Marketing Officer Mike Sievert. "When that happens, over 90 percent of all T-Mobile smartphones will feature Wi-Fi Calling."

Along with saving talk minutes, Wi-Fi calling also cuts out the frustration from spotty cell signals, and avoids surprise roaming fees, too.

Apple showed off features like improved Notifications, HealthKit, Family Sharing, third-party software keyboard support, app extensibility and more during the WWDC keynote, and said the major operating system update will be available as a free upgrade this fall.

T-Mobile has been offering Wi-Fi calling on smartphones that support the feature. Mr. Sievert said, "Already, there are 17 million Wi-Fi Calling-enabled customer devices on our network. Already, nearly 5 million customers use Wi-Fi Calling during any given month."

While T-Mobile is embracing Wi-Fi calling, Verizon and AT&T haven't climbed on board yet. Maybe this is yet another feature where the two big players have to follow T-Mobile's lead.

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Comments

Intruder

Had that on my old T-mobile blackberry years ago. Came in very handy when I was in places that had no cell towers for many miles, but did have satellite internet capability. Really a great thing and I am glad that the iPhone will now support it. AT&T better jump on board.

Lee Dronick

A few years ago AT&T gave me a microcell, so at home I have been making cell phone calls over my internet service.

Intruder

Yeah… That wasn’t an option where I was. Not AT&T territory, so to speak. No civilization for a long way, and what there was wasn’t what I would call “friendlies”.

Mike Huynh

OSX & iOS 8 Continuity leverages your iPhone’s cellular capabilities to make the voice call.  It is not the same as WiFi calling.

Lee Dronick

Mike, if I understand this new feature correctly the Mac connects to your iPhone which makes the actual cell connection. It is kind of like a Bluetooth device.

iJack

How is this better than using Skype on all devices?

Terrin

This is why T-Mobile deserves the incredible subscriber growth it is experiencing. I spend a lot of time in concrete court building with thick walls where there is generally wi-fi but little cell tower signal. This feature will be much appreciated.

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