Wi-Fi Calling

Wi-Fi Calling is a technology that enables a smartphone user to make and receive calls over a wireless internet connection as opposed to the typical cellular connection. In addition to facilitating voice calls, Wi-Fi Calling also supports wirelessly sending and receiving text messages and utilizing higher data speeds than most cellular connections.

The Wi-Fi Calling technology transfers the cellular packets of a phone call or text message from a smartphone so that they are sent over the internet wirelessly, and then sends the packets back to the cellular network prior to being delivered to the recipient party.

Only the sender of a call needs a smartphone that supports Wi-Fi Calling; the receiver can be on a wireless, cellular, or landline connection.

The State of Wi-Fi Calling Support from Cellular Providers

Wi-Fi Calling has gained mainstream attention recently, particularly following the release of Apple’s iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus smartphones, which are the first Wi-Fi Calling-compatible smartphones from Apple.

While not all cellular carriers currently support Wi-Fi Calling, a few have supported it for a number of years, including T-Mobile, which added Wi-Fi Calling support in 2007. Sprint added initial support for Wi-Fi Calling in 2014, and AT&T and Verizon expect to add Wi-Fi Calling capabilities in 2015.

There is concern that Wi-Fi Calling connections can be disconnected when the sender moves between a Wi-Fi and cellular network, and as a result, some cellular providers are looking to complement Wi-Fi Calling with another technology called Voice over LTE (VoLTE) that facilitates seamless handoffs between Wi-Fi and cellular networks.

Forrest Stroud
Forrest Stroud
Forrest is a writer for Webopedia. Experienced, entrepreneurial, and well-rounded, he has 15+ years covering technology, business software, website design, programming, and more.

Top Articles

List of Windows Operating System Versions & History [In Order]

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

Website Shortcut on Your Desktop reviewed by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a website shortcut on your desktop using...

What are the Five Generations of Computers? (1st to 5th)

Reviewed by Web Webster Each generation of computer has brought significant advances in speed and power to computing tasks. Learn about each of the...

Hotmail [Outlook] Email Accounts

Launched in 1996, Hotmail was one of the first public webmail services that could be accessed from any web browser. At its peak in...

Conti Ransomware

Conti ransomware first emerged in 2020. It uses a ransomware as a service...

Crypt888 Ransomware

Crypt888, also known as Mircop, is ransomware that encrypts files on desktops, downloads,...

AutoLocky Ransomware

AutoLocky is ransomware written in the popular AutoIt scripting language. It uses strong...