Wi-Fi calling allows users to place a voice call over a Wi-Fi network as opposed to their cellular network. The feature is useful for users who live or work in an area or building where they receive poor cell reception, but have access to a Wi-Fi network.
Users enrolled in Apple’s Public Beta program were treated to several new features last week with the fifth beta version of iOS 9. While the update added several new features (as well as a host of new wallpapers), probably one of the most important additions was the support for Wi-Fi calling on AT&T. The feature was previously only available to users on T-Mobile’s network. When AT&T Wi-Fi calling was added last week, however, the network had yet to actually support the feature. It appears as if that’s slowly starting to change.
AT&T appears to be slowly rolling out Wi-Fi calling to iOS 9 beta users in select areas. When the fifth iOS 9 beta was first released last week, users who attempted to access the feature were greeted with a webpage that simply stated “Oops! Wi-Fi Calling isn’t yet available in your area, but check back soon.” As of this morning, several users across the web reported a different message when attempting to access the feature, this time stating, “Wi-Fi Calling should be available in a few minutes.” Sure enough, just moments later, there were several reports of the Wi-Fi Calling feature working just fine.
iOS 9 users in certain areas can access the feature by toggling the Wi-Fi Calling switch in the Phone panel of the Settings app.
If the feature is available, users will be forced to go through a small setup process, involving agreeing to terms and conditions, as well as a warning that emergency services will be unable to determine your location while using the Wi-Fi Calling feature. It should be noted that this feature is only available in certain areas – some users may be greeted with the same error message that the feature isn’t available in their area yet.
The final release of iOS 9 is expected to be made available on September 9th, the same day that Apple is expected to release the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus handsets. iOS 9 is expected to eventually support Wi-Fi calling across all networks, not just T-Mobile and AT&T.