Make and receive calls over Wi-Fi when Cellular services isn’t available.
Have you ever had poor cellular reception in a restaurant or office building? Or if you’re like me, spotty cellular reception at your second home? Having the option to bypass your cellular service and make the call using Wi-Fi Calling can come in really handy. Even when you're traveling internationally; but check with your cellular provider since there may be charges for International Wi-Fi Calling.
Making voice calls over a Wi-Fi network isn’t new. Skype, Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp have been allowing you to place calls and send text over Wi-Fi for years. The difference is that cellular carriers are now making it easier to use Wi-Fi calling in conjunction with your phone number.
I first noticed Wi-Fi calling on my iPhone with the release of iOS 9.3 in March of 2016. That’s when all four major U.S. cellular carriers —including the latest addition, Verizon —started supporting Wi-Fi Calling on Apple devices. Keep in mind you need an iPhone 5c or later, to use Wi-Fi calling and you need to be on a supported carrier, according to Apple.
Here’s how to set up Wi-Fi calling on your iPhone:
Step 1 - Enable Wi-Fi Calling
Go to Settings > Phone > Wi-Fi Calling and turn it ON.
Step 2 - Complete Emergency Information
You’ll be asked to fill out emergency information, since Wi-Fi calling can make it difficult for responders to determine your location. Whenever it can, your iPhone will attempt to make emergency calls over cellular.
Step 3 - Verify You’re Using Wi-Fi Calling
If Wi-Fi Calling is available, you’ll see Wi-Fi after your carrier name in the status bar. Since you have Wi-Fi calling enabled, your iPhone will automatically use it when you’re connected to Wi-Fi.
Keep in mind not all Wi-Fi networks work with Wi-Fi Calling. If you’re having trouble,
- Connect to a different Wi-Fi network
- Turn Wi-Fi Calling off and then on again
- Go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network settings to update your network information
Step 4 - Wi-Fi Calling on other Apple Devices
You can also make or receive calls from other Apple devices, like
- iPad or iPod Touch with iOS 9 or later
- Apple Watch with watchOS 2 or later
- Mac (2012 or later) with OS X El Capitan
Make sure that you're signed in to iCloud and FaceTime with the same Apple ID that you use on your iPhone. Also make sure that your devices have the latest software.
To allow your other devices to make Wi-Fi Calls:
On your iPhone
Go to Settings > Phone > Calls on Other Devices and add your devices to the Allow Calls section.
On your iPad or iPad Touch
Go to FaceTime > Audio > enter your Phone Number and select the phone
The next time you have spotty Cellular service, try connecting to a Wi-Fi network and use Wi-Fi calling.
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