If you have a bad or weak mobile signal at home, then making traditional phone calls can be frustrating. You may find yourself having to stand in unusual parts of the house in order to find somewhere with signal!
However with customers on the EE network there is an alternative. Wi-Fi calling allows you to use a Wi-Fi network to make and receive phone calls, rather than using the traditional mobile network.
How to use your WiFi to make calls
When calling via Wi-Fi, the call transfers seamlessly to and from the WiFi connection; enabling you to make and receive phone calls and send SMS text messages without the use of an extra app like O2 and Three offer.
It may sound similar to services such as Skype and FaceTime, but these services require both callers to be connected to the internet whereas WiFi calling is different.
You won’t actually notice if you are using WiFI calling or a cellular connection, but it will transfer the call. All you’ll notice is an icon in the status bar.
The benefits of WiFi calling are more prominent if you have a weak mobile phone connection, but it is even more useful on the London Underground due to the availability of free WiFi. So now you can make calls using the WiFi connection.
In the UK at least, EE is the only network that is currently offering the service but Vodafone is reported to be offering a similar service by this summer. In the US, T-Mobile is offering WiFi calling. If you don’t have EE, O2 and Three offer solutions via apps such as TuGo for O2 and Three in Touch for Three. These work in a similar way to EE Wi-Fi calling but require a little more time in setting up.
In terms of compatible devices, the brand new Samsung Galaxy S6, the S6 Edge and the Lumia 640 have this option. Also the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus work with WiFi calling, with the iPhone 5s and 5c to be compatible by the summer.
Setting it up on an Apple Phone (with EE)
To set up the service on iOS you’ll need to be running the latest version of the operating system, iOS 8.3 and then go to Settings > Phone > WiFi Calls and then toggle the switch – this may take up to 24 hours to activate.
However this will disable the Continuity features with iOS and OS X Yosemite, so calls and texts won’t get forwarded on to Macs and iPads.