Verizon asks FCC for waiver to enable Wi-Fi calling features

Posted:
in iPhone edited October 2015
Verizon has submitted a petition to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission, asking for a waiver that would allow it to enable Wi-Fi calling on its network.




In its filing, the carrier made explicit reference to a recent waiver granted to AT&T, which allowed the latter to turn on Wi-Fi calling despite the technology not properly supporting TTY for the hearing impaired. A standard called RTT will eventually replace TTY, but isn't ready to be deployed.

When the FCC approved AT&T's petition, it invited "requests from similarly situated providers seeking a similar waiver of the TTY requirements." Verizon suggsted that regulations should allow both it and AT&T to skip waivers, but that it submitted a petition regardless, "out of an abundance of caution."

T-Mobile and Sprint have had Wi-Fi calling options for some time, which generated AT&T complaints that the FCC was being unequal in its enforcement.

If accepted, Verizon's request should allow users of iOS 9, Android, and other platforms to take advantage of integrated Wi-Fi calling features. Technically Verizon offers a form of Wi-Fi calling through a custom app, but integrated support allows automatic switching between Wi-Fi and cellular networks.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 7
    emig647emig647 Posts: 2,408member
    This is great news. Literally just switch from T-Mobile to Verizon last week. This was the feature I was going to miss the most.
  • Reply 2 of 7

    It's about [expletive] time, they said last year it would be up and running by mid-2015...

  • Reply 3 of 7

    I remember only a short time ago Verizon making fun of T-Mobile for this because 'they didn't need to use wifi calling on their strong network' or some sort of nonsense like that... my my... how times have changed.  You'd think giving customers better service would be a priority w/ these companies.  I mean, come on, the less people use your cel network, the more coverage/frequencies available to those who do need it.  If this is supported widely in densely populated areas like NYC, think of the additional channels opened up for those of us walking along the street.  

  • Reply 4 of 7
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,028member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by petieg View Post

     

    I remember only a short time ago Verizon making fun of T-Mobile for this because 'they didn't need to use wifi calling on their strong network' or some sort of nonsense like that... my my... how times have changed.  You'd think giving customers better service would be a priority w/ these companies.  I mean, come on, the less people use your cel network, the more coverage/frequencies available to those who do need it.  If this is supported widely in densely populated areas like NYC, think of the additional channels opened up for those of us walking along the street.  


    While I agree, your comment about free WiFi in NYC worries me a bit. I am getting upset with the proliferation of slow xfinitywifi hotspots, which needs a Comcast account and hopefully somewhat secure, but also am hoping that any cellular over WiFi connection has some kind of encryption (at least between cellular users) that protects it from being snooped by our friendly three-letter government agencies. Wait! That's illegal isn't it! :s

  • Reply 5 of 7

    I know AT&T has turned on their wifi calling for iOS9 as I was able to go through the process. But in reading the fine print, am I correct in my interpretation of the rules, wifi is actually NOT free? Rather, any minutes used to make a call on wifi actually counts towards my monthly total. I also read where long distance fees to Canada on Wifi calling was charged at the going rate.  So, to me the only advantage was being able to make cleaner calls where 4G/LTE was not available or weak.

  • Reply 6 of 7

    I turned on Wi-Fi calling with AT&T but after a few calls with abysmal sound quality, I turned it back off. Both the other person and I have iPhone 6 on AT&T so it should have been "HD Voice", but it was much worse, it sounded like when cellphones first went digital in the '90s.

  • Reply 7 of 7
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by IYFCalvin View Post

     

    I know AT&T has turned on their wifi calling for iOS9 as I was able to go through the process. But in reading the fine print, am I correct in my interpretation of the rules, wifi is actually NOT free? Rather, any minutes used to make a call on wifi actually counts towards my monthly total. I also read where long distance fees to Canada on Wifi calling was charged at the going rate.  So, to me the only advantage was being able to make cleaner calls where 4G/LTE was not available or weak.


    Using WiFi won't count against your minutes. You aren't using the carriers network on WiFi so they don't count. 

     

    EDIT: I just looked up on AT&T and you only get charged the normal rates when you are making international calls. Domestic calls are free and don't count against your minutes.

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