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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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092215-facetime_small.jpg


Silicon Alley Insider reports that Apple's FaceTime video calling feature coming on iPhone 4 will not tap into customers' allotments of cellular minutes. Although the feature operates only over Wi-Fi for the time being, a FaceTime session can be initiated from within a phone call, leaving some observers wondering whether the phone connection would be maintained in the background as a fallback in case the video call fails, but eating up cellular minutes while doing so.
"The voice call ends as soon as the FaceTime call connects," Apple tells us. "The FaceTime call is over Wi-Fi so does not use carrier minutes."
Apple CEO Steve Jobs noted during his introduction of iPhone 4 and FaceTime at the company's Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this month that the company will be working with carriers to allow FaceTime over cellular networks but that it will remain Wi-Fi-only at least through the end of the year.

Once the feature does go live on cellular networks, today's report points out that Apple and service providers will have to determine whether FaceTime sessions are billed as minutes, data, or both, or even a completely new category of consumption.

Article Link: Apple Confirms FaceTime Video Calling Will Not Use Cellular Minutes
 

zombitronic

macrumors 65816
Feb 9, 2007
1,118
13
Good to know. I wonder how this will change when FaceTime is available over 3G. Hopefully, it'll only count as data, not voice.
 

amac4me

macrumors 65816
Apr 26, 2005
1,303
0
I would imagine that this feature will eventually find itself used on cellular networks. Maybe Verizon?
 

Enuratique

macrumors 6502
Apr 28, 2008
276
0
Next AT&T letdown

I'm willing to bet FaceTime is the next in a long line of disappointments from AT&T. First MMS, then tethering. What's the over/under on what year AT&T actually allows FaceTime over the cellular network?
 

SkippyThorson

macrumors 68000
Jul 22, 2007
1,592
791
Utica, NY
I would count that as a plus, but all those iPhone 4 using friends of mine will be on AT&T, which doesn't use my minutes anyway. :rolleyes:
 

kevinbal

macrumors regular
Feb 28, 2006
184
9
Storrs, CT
that Apple and service providers will have to determine whether FaceTime sessions are billed as minutes, data, or both, or even a completely new category of consumption.

Completely new category for sure - something else to nickel and dime the customer for. It is a good thing that the world is so dependent on cell phones and locked into providers, because the business model of 'screw the customer as much as possible' always causes me to scratch my head.
 

joneill55

macrumors 6502
Sep 11, 2007
398
85
I'm willing to bet FaceTime is the next in a long line of disappointments from AT&T. First MMS, then tethering. What's the over/under on what year AT&T actually allows FaceTime over the cellular network?


Yea, not holding my breath on the AT&T network be able to support FaceTime in the near term/long term. Lots of Wifi usage for me in my business cycle means I will not have the need for it to work on their network.

I'll be happy if the new phone/AT&T drop less calls. That'll be an upgrade worthy of enjoyment :)
 

epictempo

macrumors regular
Sep 4, 2008
144
1
I would imagine that this feature will eventually find itself used on cellular networks. Maybe Verizon?

Can we stop mentioning Verizon. It's getting as annoying as their "can you hear me now" ads. If anything, T-mobile is just as or more likely due to shared tech.
 

yinzburgh

macrumors newbie
Jun 21, 2010
2
0
Skype??????

Hopefully Skype or some other chat host will make an app so you can video chat from iPhone 4 to a CPU!
 

macswitcha2

macrumors 65816
Oct 18, 2008
1,255
8
So does this mean that we can have face time chats with non-iPhone users given that if you're a iPhone user than most likely you're on AT&T and therefore such users have mobile to mobile free calls?
 

cmaier

macrumors Penryn
Jul 25, 2007
24,939
32,391
California
I'm willing to bet FaceTime is the next in a long line of disappointments from AT&T. First MMS, then tethering. What's the over/under on what year AT&T actually allows FaceTime over the cellular network?

It'll probably cost $30 a month, with a 10 minute cap. $1 a minute overage, but if you go over 15 minutes they disable your phone service and repossess your cat.
 

dashiel

macrumors 6502a
Nov 12, 2003
876
0
I haven't seen it mentioned anywhere, but can Facetime work with iChat?

no. not yet, one would imagine it's a slam dunk feature of 10.7, but then again i would have thought an ichat client for the iphone was a no-brainer too, but ichat mobile never happened.
 

zombitronic

macrumors 65816
Feb 9, 2007
1,118
13
I would count that as a plus, but all those iPhone 4 using friends of mine will be on AT&T, which doesn't use my minutes anyway. :rolleyes:

Good point. Minutes wouldn't matter.

I'm curious to know the average amount of data used on a typical FaceTime call. Assuming AT&T will count this as data when it's available, would the 2GB data plan be enough to use this feature frequently without worrying about going over your cap?
 

jclardy

macrumors 68040
Oct 6, 2008
3,712
3,123
Once the feature does go live on cellular networks, today's report points out that Apple and service providers will have to determine whether FaceTime sessions are billed as minutes, data, or both, or even a completely new category of consumption.

Oh boy, I can't wait until AT&T decides that data used while on a voip call is different than the 2GB of data that users are paying for now and starts charging separately for video chat.
 

Louis24x7

macrumors newbie
May 31, 2006
7
0
How to article

Since this isn't using cellular minutes, users will realize that there will be a How-To article that you will need in order to get this working with your router. Kind of like the article for "Back to my Mac", which doesn't work very well.
 

Robin4

macrumors 6502
Feb 6, 2010
355
26
RTD-NC
I'm confused. Does this mean that FaceTime works almost like Skype? Except for the actual call, everything else (for the time being) will not be charged?
 

Outrigger

macrumors 68000
Dec 22, 2008
1,764
95
Good point. Minutes wouldn't matter.

I'm curious to know the average amount of data used on a typical FaceTime call. Assuming AT&T will count this as data when it's available, would the 2GB data plan be enough to use this feature frequently without worrying about going over your cap?

Fring said that when using their app on the HTC Evo consumes about 1MB per minute of video calling.

For those that live in crappy areas like NYC and San Fran and other urban areas such as myself, I really can't imagine having Face Time on their 3G when its hard as it is trying to maintain a regular call. Can you imagine adding even MORE traffic to an that?
 

tooz

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2009
311
0
psssst. apple: those of us international have networks that this wouldn't cripple! How about some 3G lovin for us Aussies?
 

dagamer34

macrumors 65816
May 1, 2007
1,359
101
Houston, TX
no. not yet, one would imagine it's a slam dunk feature of 10.7, but then again i would have thought an ichat client for the iphone was a no-brainer too, but ichat mobile never happened.

What network would you use? Would it just be a network of iPhone users?

Creating an iChat client would be rather redundant, considering it just piggybacks AIM's network. And I think Meebo does a darn good job on the iPhone as an IM client. I'm not sure what more you are looking for than slapping the word "Apple" on an IM app.
 
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