Wi-Fi calling uses a wireless connection to make phone calls or send texts over the internet, instead of using cell towers owned by your cellular provider. If you have poor cellular signal at work, home or abroad Wi-Fi calling can be a life saver.
In the past support for Wi-Fi calling was limited. Today, most major cell phone carriers now support Wi-Fi calling and the option to connect to Wi-Fi now comes standard with the most recent iPhones and Android devices.
How Wi-Fi Calling Works
Wi-Fi calling allows you to make high-quality phone calls (and send texts). Placing a Wi-Fi call it’s just like placing a regular cell phone call. There is no need to log in, and typically no need to use an app to get the job done.
Wi-Fi calling sends your phone call through the internet instead of routing to a cell tower. Since you’re not using a cell tower to place the call, you don’t need a cellular service in order to make a call.
With the popularity of free public Wi-Fi, making phone calls from more places may be cheaper than ever before. In fact, most fast food restaurants, stores, hotels and coffee shops (among other public areas) offer free wifi hotspots that you can connect to, to make calls.
Advantages of Wi-Fi Calling
Why would you choose to call through the Internet instead of placing a regular cellular call? There are several advantages to using Wi-Fi to place phone calls instead of using your cell phone plan minutes.
1) Fixes Poor Cellular Reception
Wi-Fi calling provides an option for businesses and individuals who work or live in areas with poor or spotty cellular reception. If they have Wi-Fi, they can bypass the cellular network and make phone calls using their Wi-Fi internet connection at work, home or public places.
2) Better Quality Voice Audio
Voice sounds so much better than traditional cellular technology. With little to no dropped calls.
3) Free Calls
You can use Wi-Fi calling any time that your phone has a Wi-Fi signal. Free Wi-Fi calling can make a big difference if you have limited minutes.
4) Great for Travelers
Wi-Fi calling is great for overseas travelers because there’s typically no roaming or international charge for making calls or sending texts. Wi-Fi calling is free except for data usage, which means that you can avoid paying extra for international calls.
However, despite these benefits, one should always take precautions with regards to safety and privacy when utilizing any public Wi-Fi connection. Presume that the line is open to interception and refrain from typing or saying personal confidential information.
Disadvantages of Wi-Fi Calling
On the other side of the coin, Wi-Fi calling is not possible without a good wireless connection. Here are some disadvantages to using Wi-Fi instead of using your cell phone plan minutes.
1) Data Usage Charges
Wi-Fi calling defaults to using your cell phone’s data plan. Calls typically use about 1 MB of data per minute for a call, and 6-8 MB of data for a video call. If you do not have unlimited data this could get costly.
2) Signal Strength Variations
Many times, the quality of service can be poor and there is no guarantee there will be enough bandwidth for a high-quality call. Signal strength can diminish as more people attempt to use the same network. If your home or work this is not a problem. However in public places such as at hotels, airports places tit can be.
3) Delays in Data Transfer
With Wi-Fi calling service there may be a 1- or 2-second delay in the conversation.
Setting up Wi-Fi Calling up on your Phone
Wi-Fi calling isn’t automatically enabled on smartphones. To turn yours on, go to the Settings menu and Enable Wi-Fi Calling on your iPhone or Android. Once you activate it, just dial or text as usual and the rest is handled automatically in the background. All major cell phone carriers offer Wi-Fi calling, with support for iPhones and Android phones. For Wi-Fi calling to work, don’t forget to connect to your local Wi-Fi.
Using an App for Wi-Fi Calling
If your phone or carrier doesn’t support Wi-Fi calling you can always send calls and text through an app like FaceTime, Google Voice, Facebook Messenger, Skype or one of the many other calling apps. Remember, you’ll still need a data connection like a carrier data plan or a Wi-Fi connection.
If you have any questions on Wi-Fi calling please feel free to call our office at (732) 702-5400. Pro-Tech can come to your business or home and assist you with planning, implementation, as well as other services. Please see our website homepage for other services we offer.