AT&T starts nationwide FaceTime over cellular rollout

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
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.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 33
    Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.
  • Reply 2 of 33
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,461member
    dlscharlau wrote: »
    Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.

    Dittios from Austin, TX; includng iPad.
  • Reply 3 of 33
    jwbljwbl Posts: 4member
    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.
  • Reply 4 of 33
    Kicked on this morning for me in Sacramento, CA. Quality was good. Did a quick test call with the wife.
  • Reply 5 of 33


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

  • Reply 6 of 33
    Ft Myers Florida, just checked and mine is activated, on my grandfathered unlimited account.
  • Reply 7 of 33
    m01etym01ety Posts: 278member
    Just checked. Working in metro Boston on a grandfathered LTE plan!
  • Reply 8 of 33
    tpf1952tpf1952 Posts: 56member


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

  • Reply 9 of 33
    icarbonicarbon Posts: 196member
    [quote name="dlscharlau" url="/t/158100/at-t-starts-nationwide-facetime-over-cellular-rollout#post_2347845"]Georgetown, SC grandfathered active for weeks now.[/quote

    Ditto from Bloomington Indiana
  • Reply 10 of 33
    It is on in Phoenix AZ!!
  • Reply 11 of 33
    zorinlynxzorinlynx Posts: 170member
    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!
  • Reply 12 of 33
    john.bjohn.b Posts: 2,721member

    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.

  • Reply 13 of 33
    It's on in NYC. I have an LTE with a Gradfathered plan.
  • Reply 14 of 33
    rob55rob55 Posts: 1,255member

    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.

  • Reply 15 of 33
    acmdudeacmdude Posts: 3member
    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.
  • Reply 16 of 33
    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.
  • Reply 17 of 33
    russmacrussmac Posts: 1member
    Grandfathered in Montgomery, Alabama. We've had it for about a month now...
  • Reply 18 of 33
    4s on unlimited in Dallas, TX area. No dice yet.
  • Reply 19 of 33
    r00fusr00fus Posts: 245member
    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.
  • Reply 20 of 33
    San Antonio Texas has been working for at least 10 days! Att iPhone 5
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