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AT&T starts nationwide FaceTime over cellular rollout

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
AT&T appears to be in the midst of rolling out support for Apple's FaceTime video calling service for iPhone on its cellular network, making good on a promise to support all video chat apps over wireless by the end of the year.

FaceTime


While no public announcement has been made regarding the latest policy change, a number of AppleInsider readers, including Jon from Maryland, have reported a recent activation of FaceTime over cellular on both LTE and HSPA+, even those with grandfathered unlimited data plans. Previously, the company stated it would be activating the service in June for LTE devices only.

So far, activation of the service has been verified in parts of New York, Maryland, Georgia, Louisiana, California and Hawaii. Voice and video quality is nearly on a par with the Wi-Fi implementation of the service, suggesting AT&T is not throttling those subscribers who choose to use the feature while on the go.

The rollout comes less than one month after AT&T announced it would be enabling first-party video chat apps on its network over the course of 2013. At the time, the telecom said it expected to complete the rollout by the end of the year.

While FaceTime over cellular debuted in iOS 6, AT&T limited access to Mobile Share plan subscribers and LTE device owners with a tiered plan. The telecom began expanding support for FaceTime in November 2012, with the shift initially including a few users with grandfathered unlimited data plans. The carrier later limited the service to those with tiered data plans.

It is unknown to which, or how many, locations AT&T has rolled out the service, though the company appears to be targeting large metropolitan areas first.

AppleInsider has reached out for comment and will update this article upon receiving a response.
post #2 of 32
Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.
post #3 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by dlscharlau View Post

Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.

Dittios from Austin, TX; includng iPad.
post #4 of 32
I received the update on my iphone5 and my ipad mini last friday here in OKC. i was checking to see if i had received the ebs update and received a message stating something like settings updated restart your device. I noticed about an hour later that facetime over cellular was turned on.
post #5 of 32
Kicked on this morning for me in Sacramento, CA. Quality was good. Did a quick test call with the wife.
post #6 of 32

AT&T has allowed FaceTime over cellular in Louisiana on iPhone 5 (unlimited) and iPhone 4S (5GB/month) running iOS 6

post #7 of 32
Ft Myers Florida, just checked and mine is activated, on my grandfathered unlimited account.
post #8 of 32
Just checked. Working in metro Boston on a grandfathered LTE plan!
"I have a dream, that one day, my posts will be judged by their content, not their spelling."
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post #9 of 32

From Raleigh, N.C., cellular Facetime is activated on my grandfathered unlimited data plan too. I wonder if it's snappier?

post #10 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by dlscharlau View Post

Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.[/quote

Ditto from Bloomington Indiana
post #11 of 32
It is on in Phoenix AZ!!
post #12 of 32
I sometimes wonder why they took so long.

FaceTime over cellular doesn't even use that much bandwidth. I did a 17 minute FaceTime call over cellular this afternoon and it totaled 48MB. That's less than 3MB per minute; services like watching NetFlix use MUCH more bandwidth than that.

I'm glad they came to their senses!
post #13 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by zorinlynx View Post

I sometimes wonder why they took so long.

FaceTime over cellular doesn't even use that much bandwidth. I did a 17 minute FaceTime call over cellular this afternoon and it totaled 48MB. That's less than 3MB per minute; services like watching NetFlix use MUCH more bandwidth than that.

I'm glad they came to their senses!

 

 

Nice that iOS7 now allows us to log cell usage on a per-app basis.


Edited by John.B - 6/17/13 at 8:12pm

   Apple develops an improved programming language.  Google copied Java.  Everything you need to know, right there.

 

  MA497LL/A FB463LL/A MC572LL/A FC060LL/A MD481LL/A MD388LL/A ME344LL/A

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   Apple develops an improved programming language.  Google copied Java.  Everything you need to know, right there.

 

  MA497LL/A FB463LL/A MC572LL/A FC060LL/A MD481LL/A MD388LL/A ME344LL/A

Reply
post #14 of 32
It's on in NYC. I have an LTE with a Gradfathered plan.
post #15 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Rice View Post

It's on in NYC. I have an LTE with a Gradfathered plan.

 

Likewise in northern NJ, but I guess that's obvious since it's working in NYC.

post #16 of 32
It's working in Bend, OR too. I was surprised when my brother called me for a FaceTime chat and I was in the car with no wifi. It worked perfectly over cellular.
post #17 of 32
It's been active for me in West Palm Beach, FL since mid May. I knew it was coming starting some time in June, but I didn't know mine was already activated until I received a FT call from my daughter and I was not in WiFi. I'm glad I didn't let AT&T talk me out of my "Unlimited" plan when the iPhone 4 came out in 2010.
post #18 of 32
Grandfathered in Montgomery, Alabama. We've had it for about a month now...
post #19 of 32
4s on unlimited in Dallas, TX area. No dice yet.
post #20 of 32
Enjoy AT&T users. I ditched for t-mobile and have been enjoying FT over LTE for a couple months now.

Will be nice to see all my friends on AT&T being FT capable though.
post #21 of 32
San Antonio Texas has been working for at least 10 days! Att iPhone 5
post #22 of 32
Just tried it in Chicago (western suburbs) and could receive video over LTE from a WIFI contact, but wasn't sending video.
post #23 of 32
I am sorry but, this FaceTime over AT&T has been on & off for months
post #24 of 32
In Sacramento, CA...noticed FaceTime working for my wife and I last week, both on grandfathered unlimited plans. The video/audio quality was good (with a solid signal).
post #25 of 32
I received a message on my iPhone 5 this morning that my cellular carrier settings have been updated. I am now able to make facetime calls with my Grandfathered unlimited date plan in Indianapolis, Indiana.... 1smile.gif
post #26 of 32

In Santa Clara, CA. Got the carrier update notification on a grand fathered 4S but no facetime, still claims that I need to call AT&T

post #27 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by SurendarChandra View Post

In Santa Clara, CA. Got the carrier update notification on a grand fathered 4S but no facetime, still claims that I need to call AT&T

Maybe that was your update for the new alerts system? Mine alerts update came sometime Sunday afternoon.

post #28 of 32

Ah yes, I have too much crap on my phone and this option was *way* down at the bottom. Still, Apple could've called it "Wireless Emergency Alerts" instead of "Government Alerts"!!

post #29 of 32

The original AT&T press release stated only LTE devices would be added. As with the other 4S owners on unlimited plans, I also do not have FaceTime working. I'm traveling in the South East and have tried in Northern Georgia and North Carolina. I'm guessing the HSPA+ mention in the article is speculation/rumor or is simply some towers getting configured in error like the last roll out. Honestly I don't see why they are limiting it to LTE devices. I can understand limiting it to LTE markets because of the added backhaul to the towers. Oh well, looks like I'll be waiting another few months before I can FaceTime over Cell.

post #30 of 32
FaceTime over cellular is available in Abilene, TX
post #31 of 32
That was on my 4s, by the way.
post #32 of 32
I am from Baltimore have 5 phones with one grandfathered unlimited and two data usage phones but I was just told that Cellular will not be allowed for Facetime. BAD AT&T !!
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