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AT&T to offer iPhone 5 FaceTime over cellular without a shared data plan

post #1 of 37
Thread Starter 
AT&T announced on Thursday that it will enable FaceTime video calls for iPhone 5 users with any AT&T Mobile Share plan, expanding it beyond customers with its new shared data plans.

FaceTime over cellular will also be available to users of Apples third- and fourth-generation iPad, as well as the new iPad mini, running iOS 6. FaceTime over cellular will officially be available for any LTE device on any tiered data plan when the service launches in the next 8 to 10 weeks.

The only users who will be left out of FaceTime over cellular will be those with legacy unlimited data plans. AT&T transitioned to capped data plans in 2010, and this year began offering shared data plans.

AT&T also said it will make FaceTime over cellular available to deaf and hard of hearing customers who qualify for special text and data-only packages.

FaceTime


In an effort to encourage users to switch to its Mobile Share data plans, and also to limit bandwidth use on its network, AT&T originally chose to limit FaceTime over cellular calls to customers who subscribed to its Mobile Share plans. After facing criticism, AT&T defended its decision by arguing it did not violate the Federal Communications Commission's net neutrality rules.

But AT&T's chief rival, Verizon, allows all iPhone 5 users to make FaceTime calls over cellular data connections, and did not limit access to its shared data plan customers. But Verizon's plan goes one step further and allows video calls on any data allowance tier, including legacy unlimited plans.
post #2 of 37
Ummm, I don't see a link to the official AT&T announcement, just backlinks to older AI articles?

Shouldn't there be a source link/source cited?
post #3 of 37
B**tards! I like my unlimited plan!

(at least its something, now where's the free tethering?)
post #4 of 37
When does unlimited not mean unlimited? This is ridiculous. I paid for an unlimited #@$$ plan. That is what I should get!
post #5 of 37
You know what's funny...

I have AT&T and a Mobile Sharing plan, and I can't get Factime to work at all. It never connects. Never.

It's really frustrating and no one seems to have an answer.

I can't even find a person who successfully makes facetime cellular connections... so I have no idea if my problem is widespread or not.

No one seems to know or care.
post #6 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCarbon View Post

B**tards! I like my unlimited plan!
(at least its something, now where's the free tethering?)

The article said the only people who don't get the plan are the unlimited... so it isn't something- it's nothing for us unlimited folks.... still.  No FaceTime and no Tethering.  Tethering- I don't like, but I understand.  FaceTime... I don't understand.

2014 27" Retina iMac i5, 2012 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air 2, iPad Mini Retina, iPhone 6, iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

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2014 27" Retina iMac i5, 2012 27" iMac i7, 2011 Mac Mini i5
iPad Air 2, iPad Mini Retina, iPhone 6, iPhone 5S, iPod Touch 5
Time Capsule 5, (3) AirPort Express 2, (2) Apple TV 3

Reply
post #7 of 37
What about AT & T hotspot support for the iPad and also the iPad mini?
post #8 of 37

Since all the carriers are literally the same company, offering the same plans at the same prices and the same rules and restrictions, what reason is there to use AT&T?

 

AT&T presently has data+voice, but Verizon actually has places with data. That's the only tradeoff I can see, and when VoLTE is done, AT&T won't have anything in their court.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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post #9 of 37

Too late.  I switched to Verizon.  Having been with AT&T since the original iPhone - I finally got tired of AT&T holding options hostage unless you upgraded to a new plan or paid extra.  Not that Verizon is much better, but having tried to argue for free tethering and free facetime over cellular with the customer service people - I voted with my feet.  

post #10 of 37
Is Skype better or worse than FaceTime???

I don't use either one, but it appears that AT&T has no issues with people using Skype..
Dr
Pepper
Crew
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Dr
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post #11 of 37
Except for showing the other person something with the backside camera, FaceTime is over-rated and mostly unnecessary. I consider the unlimited data plan superior in value. However, tethering is another issue. It is just plain stupid of AT&T to quibble with frustrated legacy subscribers looking for a reason to switch providers.
post #12 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post

Except for showing the other person something with the backside camera, FaceTime is over-rated and mostly unnecessary. I consider the unlimited data plan superior in value. However, tethering is another issue. It is just plain stupid of AT&T to quibble with frustrated legacy subscribers looking for a reason to switch providers.


As somebody who has never really been comfortable talking on the phone facetime is no over-rated and unnecessary. I definitely prefer being able to see the person I'm talking to rather than not

post #13 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyb0731 View Post


As somebody who has never really been comfortable talking on the phone facetime is no over-rated and unnecessary. I definitely prefer being able to see the person I'm talking to rather than not

Agreed - convenient way to show brother-in-law our new house, see an out-of-town friend's new baby - obviously this could be done via some other program, but facetime makes it simple and its a feature we use often

post #14 of 37
Quote:
The only users who will be left out of FaceTime over cellular will be
those with legacy unlimited data plan
To rephrase it, FaceTime over cellular is available ONLY to iOS 6 customers with an LTE device or those with a Shared data plan.

iPad 1, 2 with a tiered data plan and all non-iPhone 5 users with a tiered data plan are still blocked.
post #15 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post

Except for showing the other person something with the backside camera, FaceTime is over-rated and mostly unnecessary. I consider the unlimited data plan superior in value. However, tethering is another issue. It is just plain stupid of AT&T to quibble with frustrated legacy subscribers looking for a reason to switch providers.

 

Two comments:

   1.  Facetime voice quality is surprisingly better and more clear than a regular cellular call.  Switching makes the voice quality sound like it's going from talking in a tin can (AT&T) to nice clear distinct sound.  A few times, me and the person I'm talking with simply put the phone down (so if you're looking at the screen, all you see is ceiling, or black (if the back camera is activated)).  The call quality is that much better.

 

   2.  When I need to see something (or I want to show something), Facetime comes in really really handy.  No more "next time I'm visiting, I'll take a look".  Now, I can see first-hand and guide them what I want them to do.

post #16 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by LMGS View Post

Is Skype better or worse than FaceTime???
I don't use either one, but it appears that AT&T has no issues with people using Skype..

 

Skype is terrible at least how it works on iPhone. Image quality is way worse and voice and video are out of sync most of the time.

post #17 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by commandercrash View Post

Too late.  I switched to Verizon.  Having been with AT&T since the original iPhone - I finally got tired of AT&T holding options hostage unless you upgraded to a new plan or paid extra.  Not that Verizon is much better, but having tried to argue for free tethering and free facetime over cellular with the customer service people - I voted with my feet.  

 

How about not being to able to browse while on a call out of wifi access?  

post #18 of 37

I am so glad I will be able to call my friends and relatives without having to be at home or office...

I guess my FCC complaint (along with complaints from many others) has been finally heard.

post #19 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by commandercrash View Post

Too late.  I switched to Verizon.  Having been with AT&T since the original iPhone - I finally got tired of AT&T holding options hostage unless you upgraded to a new plan or paid extra.  Not that Verizon is much better, but having tried to argue for free tethering and free facetime over cellular with the customer service people - I voted with my feet.  

and of course, it was the loss of people like you that likely spurred ATT to act.

post #20 of 37
Two words, F. U. AT&T

I've dumped my ATT iPads for Verizon with free hotspot capability, and The family's cell plan is leaving ATT very soon, vultures. It's not like many will use facetime all that much or often, but it's handy for occasional chats where seeing is helpful, so frustrating to see folks without a clue lording over these plans like this.

I have legacy unlimited LTE with the new 4G throttle cap I believe. I seldom even use 2G per month but it frickin shouldn't matter how I use the data. If I use too much of my UNLIMITED data for something like facetime you'll throttle me anyway so why do you care??? Arrgh!
Edited by RemE - 11/8/12 at 2:20pm
post #21 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by ort View Post

You know what's funny...
I have AT&T and a Mobile Sharing plan, and I can't get Factime to work at all. It never connects. Never.
It's really frustrating and no one seems to have an answer.
I can't even find a person who successfully makes facetime cellular connections... so I have no idea if my problem is widespread or not.
No one seems to know or care.

I use FT over cellular (LTE) periodically and it works PERFECTLY.  I have both initiated and received FT calls while on cellular.  Do be aware you can use a LOT of your data plan using FT.  A short 5-10 minute FT call easily chews up 15MB or more.  Still a nice to have feature along with tethering when needed.

 

david

post #22 of 37
Too little too late for me AT&T. I've already switched to Verizon. Not that this had anything to do with it. I'd been with AT&T since before the original iPhone and after a poor experience with them, it's time to move on as well.
post #23 of 37
Skype is better the FaceTime. And it works great on Unlimited plans.

Apple increments product features one bite at a time...hence the logo. Want the next big thing? You're gonna have to pick another fruit from the Apple Tree.

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Apple increments product features one bite at a time...hence the logo. Want the next big thing? You're gonna have to pick another fruit from the Apple Tree.

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post #24 of 37
ATT capping its business potential by restricting people from using FaceTime. The data is the account holders to use in any manner they see fit. If the account holder with unlimited data goes over the 5GB limit he will be throttled Why limit the account holder as to how they can use their data.
post #25 of 37

Who cares? AT&T it's too late. I am the old legacy unlimited data plan subscriber and you don't support this. I am already evaluating moving to Sprint.

post #26 of 37

AT&T only allows FaceTime with 6th generation iPhones? That really sucks guys.

Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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post #27 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

Quote:
The only users who will be left out of FaceTime over cellular will be
those with legacy unlimited data plan
To rephrase it, FaceTime over cellular is available ONLY to iOS 6 customers with an LTE device or those with a Shared data plan.

iPad 1, 2 with a tiered data plan and all non-iPhone 5 users with a tiered data plan are still blocked.

1 doesn't have a FFC
Quote:
Originally Posted by jd_in_sb View Post

AT&T only allows FaceTime with 6th generation iPhones? That really sucks guys.

Another reason to get the 5. Or even better; hop over to Sprint.
I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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post #28 of 37

Someone needs to shove the face of AT&T into a dictionary.

 

 

unlimited |ˌənˈlimitid| adjective
not limited or restricted in terms of number, quantity, or extent.
 
Whatever happened to false advertising? Oh, I see it's alive and well at AT&T.
post #29 of 37
Originally Posted by Wings View Post
Someone needs to shove the face of AT&T into a dictionary.

 

unlimited |ˌənˈlimitid| adjective

not limited or restricted in terms of number, quantity, or extent.

 

They can't be sued over this because there's an 'or' there. It's unlimited in extent, as in "you can use the service anywhere you're on our network that we have data". This allows them to cap and throttle in every other regard.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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post #30 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

They can't be sued over this because there's an 'or' there. It's unlimited in extent, as in "you can use the service anywhere you're on our network that we have data". This allows them to cap and throttle in every other regard.

No. They CAN be sued. Anyone can be sued for just about anything. They cannot be sued in the form of a class-action lawsuit.

If we were to use your personal rationalization of AT&T's nonsense then ALL of AT&T's data plans are unlimited in that they all let a customer "use the service anywhere you're on our network that we have data.
Edited by lamewing - 11/9/12 at 9:38am
post #31 of 37
We can do the same with Skype over 3G and LTE. If Apple isn't wiling to stand up to AT&T regarding this BS then people will either simply not use Apple's facetime or will instead use Microsoft's (a competitor) Skype instead.
Edited by lamewing - 11/9/12 at 9:34am
post #32 of 37
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post
No. They CAN be sued. Anyone can be sued for just about anything. They cannot be sued in the form of a class-action lawsuit.
If you use your personal rationalization of AT&T's nonsense then ALL of AT&T's data plans are unlimited in that they all let a customer "use the service anywhere you're on our network that we have data.

 

Does sarcasm not exist in your culture?

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply
post #33 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


1 doesn't have a FFC
Another reason to get the 5. Or even better; hop over to Sprint.

I already own an iPhone 5 but my wife and friends don't so FaceTime over cellular is useless to me.

Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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Please update the AppleInsider app to function in landscape mode.

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post #34 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Does sarcasm not exist in your culture?

Sarcasm? So you're going to play the sarcasm card now that someone has faulted your logic. Nice. (For the record...THAT was sarcasm)
post #35 of 37
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post
So you're going to play the sarcasm card now that someone has faulted your logic.

 

Guess not.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply
post #36 of 37

I've been living out of the country for 18 months and don't really know about AT&T's data plans and all these new shared plans, new shared plans vs. old plans etc.

 

I still have a line with my parents for $10 to keep the number I had. I will return in March and I'll have my iPhone back on AT&T. Will I be able to do FT over 3G even if I'm the only line with a smartphone?

post #37 of 37
Originally Posted by maclvr03 View Post
I still have a line with my parents for $10 to keep the number I had. I will return in March and I'll have my iPhone back on AT&T. Will I be able to do FT over 3G even if I'm the only line with a smartphone?

 

Yes, if you upgrade to the newest plans.

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
Reply

Originally Posted by Marvin

The only thing more insecure than Android’s OS is its userbase.
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