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212rikanmofo

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jan 31, 2003
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Under Settings > Cellular, there's an option to enable wi-fi calling. I'm not exactly sure what this does and if there are any added benefits to have this feature enabled?

I am on a cellular plan with AT&T. So if I turn this on, will it always try to use AT&T's Wi-Fi to make/receive calls instead of using AT&T's cellular towers instead? Are there any advantages to enabling this?
 

Carilyn

macrumors regular
Dec 5, 2016
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WiFi calling was a must for me at my previous house because we had zero att cell service indoors. It allowed me to receive calls still while at home. One advantage is is that it won’t use your data while on WiFi calling. I always enable it.
 
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martin2345uk

macrumors 65816
Jan 6, 2013
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707
Manchester, UK
I've just joined Three in the UK and they also have this service - just as well really as it would appear their signal is pretty much non-existent inside my house!
 
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212rikanmofo

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jan 31, 2003
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WiFi calling was a must for me at my previous house because we had zero att cell service indoors. It allowed me to receive calls still while at home. One advantage is is that it won’t use your data while on WiFi calling. I always enable it.

So since I'm on a 3 line family shared minutes plan. My line is the only one with unlimited data. I'm still confused on exactly which wi-fi network it will be using Does enabling this feature use AT&T's wi-fi network or my home's wifi?

And even if I don't have unlimited data on my AT&T plan, using this feature won't eat up my data at all? I want to be sure before I enable it that I don't get any surprise charges on my next bill. If this feature is free to use, then I'll flip the switch. But I just wanted to confirm first with others.
 
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akash.nu

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May 26, 2016
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WiFi calling uses any available WiFi your device is connected to, to boost the call quality and this will be counted against your minutes.
 
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Jordan921

macrumors 601
Jul 7, 2010
4,991
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Bay Area
So since I'm on a 3 line family shared minutes plan. My line is the only one with unlimited data. I'm still confused on exactly which wi-fi network it will be using Does enabling this feature use AT&T's wi-fi network or my home's wifi?

And even if I don't have unlimited data on my AT&T plan, using this feature won't eat up my data at all? I want to be sure before I enable it that I don't get any surprise charges on my next bill. If this feature is free to use, then I'll flip the switch. But I just wanted to confirm first with others.

It uses your whatever WiFi connection you are on.
 
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212rikanmofo

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Original poster
Jan 31, 2003
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Okay so if i enable this it'll use my home's wifi connection. So how does this count against my minutes? It shouldn't affect or touch my minutes being used at all on AT&T because I'm using my home's wifi data to make/receive calls.
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
Under Settings > Cellular, there's an option to enable wi-fi calling. I'm not exactly sure what this does and if there are any added benefits to have this feature enabled?

I am on a cellular plan with AT&T. So if I turn this on, will it always try to use AT&T's Wi-Fi to make/receive calls instead of using AT&T's cellular towers instead? Are there any advantages to enabling this?
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203032

https://www.att.com/shop/wireless/features/wifi-calling.html
 
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Carilyn

macrumors regular
Dec 5, 2016
119
234
Okay so if i enable this it'll use my home's wifi connection. So how does this count against my minutes? It shouldn't affect or touch my minutes being used at all on AT&T because I'm using my home's wifi data to make/receive calls.


I’ve never had it affect my minutes. I literally had no service inside to be able to use any data even if I wanted to and could make and receive calls on my homes WiFi with no issues.
 
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BugeyeSTI

macrumors 601
Aug 19, 2017
4,238
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Arizona
I was under the assumption that the phone only switches to wifi if the cell signal is to weak to make/receive a call or data. Someone correct me if I’m wrong as I live in an area that always has excellent cell coverage..
 
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212rikanmofo

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jan 31, 2003
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Bugeye, that's what I also assume, but I would like somebody to confirm this. Since I am in the Apple ecosystem, I have an iMac, MacBook, iPad, iPhone, etc. I also see this feature under FaceTime settings as well for all those devices, and if you enable wi-fi calling, it would allow you to make/receive calls on those devices whether your phone is near or far. But if you have wifi calling off, then under FaceTime's settings you can only make/receive calls using your phone's cellular only and your phone has to be nearby as oppose to wifi where your phone doesn't have to be nearby.
 
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mdlooker

macrumors 65816
Mar 7, 2011
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201
US
Why I keep my Verizon service active while abroad... WiFi Calling and functionality
**Edit** Disclaimer.. Some of the below aren't organic to WiFi Calling

1. Can continue iMessage communication as if I'm in my house.
2. Can continue calling other IPs as if I'm in my house.
3. Can use my Verizon App to send text messages to non IP users..like I do in my house.
4. While abroad, select a VPN and activate it (use for all of the above uses as well), and you can now steam HBO Now (only authorized to view through United States servers; SlingTV-on authorized to view through United States servers; same for Amazon Prime Videos and a number of other types of services of that manner).
5. Select any country... any country at all.. press +country code, then phone number.. guess what, you're talking to anyone in the world.. all through WiFi calling.

It's an amazing feature to have; it's just not commonly realized by many. Activate it now then anytime you're abroad, like on a cruise or something, connect to a wifi signal and you'll have the functionality that you're commonly use to. **Just put that VPN on!!**
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
Why I keep my Verizon service active while abroad... WiFi Calling and functionality

1. Can continue iMessage communication as if I'm in my house.
2. Can continue calling other IPs as if I'm in my house.
3. Can use my Verizon App to send text messages to non IP users..like I do in my house.
4. While abroad, select a VPN and activate it (use for all of the above uses as well), and you can now steam HBO Now (only authorized to view through United States servers; SlingTV-on authorized to view through United States servers; same for Amazon Prime Videos and a number of other types of services of that manner).
5. Select any country... any country at all.. press +country code, then phone number.. guess what, you're talking to anyone in the world.. all through WiFi calling.

It's an amazing feature to have; it's just not commonly realized by many. Activate it now then anytime you're abroad, like on a cruise or something, connect to a wifi signal and you'll have the functionality that you're commonly use to. **Just put that VPN on!!**
Is VPN really needed for WiFi calling features (and could it get in the way of them working properly or as good as they could)?
 
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Sigp232

macrumors regular
Sep 27, 2015
120
64
Yes turn on WiFi calling and turn off your cellular data and give it a try you can still make calls using your connected WiFi with cellular LTE data and voice off. Its a cool little important feature lots of people don’t know.
 
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mdlooker

macrumors 65816
Mar 7, 2011
1,220
201
US
Is VPN really needed for WiFi calling features (and could it get in the way of them working properly or as good as they could)?

In most cases, VPN is a good filter and added layer of concealment security for users though it doesn't "prevent" experts from compromising ones phone if they wanted. Some things I've found that VPN has slowed the process and/or even prevented, like some downloading/uploading. But on unsecure WiFi systems, it leaves you less vulnerable than without. I haven't paid for any VPN Apps and most free ones allow you to choose the location of which you want your phone to be detected as located. Out of the gazillion out there, I use Betternet and VPN 360 (both are free).
 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
In most cases, VPN is a good filter and added layer of concealment security for users though it doesn't "prevent" experts from compromising ones phone if they wanted. Some things I've found that VPN has slowed the process and/or even prevented, like some downloading/uploading. But on unsecure WiFi systems, it leaves you less vulnerable than without. I haven't paid for any VPN Apps and most free ones allow you to choose the location of which you want your phone to be detected as located. Out of the gazillion out there, I use Betternet and VPN 360 (both are free).
I certainly get the general aspect of VPN in situations like that, just wasn't quite sure how much it all applies to WiFi calling aspects in particular given that those should already be routed through secure servers and basically "baked in" into the OS in a sense.
 
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mdlooker

macrumors 65816
Mar 7, 2011
1,220
201
US
I certainly get the general aspect of VPN in situations like that, just wasn't quite sure how much it all applies to WiFi calling aspects in particular given that those should already be routed through secure servers and basically "baked in" into the OS in a sense.

I don't think there's much correlation in terms of one required for the other..just "WiFi" in general lends "unsecure" to me which creates the desire for VPN.
 
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kevink2

macrumors 68000
Nov 2, 2008
1,711
252
Many plans have "unlimited" minutes nowadays, so it doesn't matter. Wi-Fi calling would have allowed me to use my US number in the UK on vacation, but ATT Prepaid doesn't support Wi-Fi calling.
 
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212rikanmofo

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Jan 31, 2003
1,697
645
Yes turn on WiFi calling and turn off your cellular data and give it a try you can still make calls using your connected WiFi with cellular LTE data and voice off. Its a cool little important feature lots of people don’t know.

That sounds very handy and useful. I have little to no knowledge about this "Wifi Calling" Feature and was always afraid to turn it on or use it because I was afraid that it would be an extra charge on my phone bill. I'm on AT&T, so for example, if I travel abroad to lets say Thailand, and when I get there I purchase a prepaid sim and replace it with my AT&T one. Will I still be able to use this feature or is it only available while I have my AT&T sim?

Or do you guys mean I can just simply leave in my AT&T sim while traveling abroad, shut down cellular (LTE/Data), enable Wifi calling, connect to any wifi hotspot and I still can make and receive phone calls? But if shut off cellular/LTE won't that mean anyone that calls my phone number won't be able to get through to me?
[doublepost=1538005357][/doublepost]For some reason I can't enable Wi-Fi Calling on my MacBook under FaceTime.app. When I click on the 'Upgrade to Wi-Fi Calling' button, nothing happens. I was able to enable it on my iMac without any problems.



 
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C DM

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Oct 17, 2011
51,388
19,447
Or do you guys mean I can just simply leave in my AT&T sim while traveling abroad, shut down cellular (LTE/Data), enable Wifi calling, connect to any wifi hotspot and I still can make and receive phone calls? But if shut off cellular/LTE won't that mean anyone that calls my phone number won't be able to get through to me?
With WiFi calling WiFi will be used in place of cellular connection as if you had a regular cellular connection.

The earlier linked AT&T WiFi calling page has more details, including an FAQ: https://www.att.com/shop/wireless/features/wifi-calling.html
 
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