T-Mobile's Android Wi-Fi Calling explained

This morning, T-Mobile announced that Wi-Fi calling would be coming to select Android handsets in the near future. We reached out to our friends at T-Mobile to ask what the difference — if any — would be between Wi-Fi calling on an Android device versus a non-Android device. Here is T-Mobile’s response:

Wi-Fi Calling for Android is built upon the same technology as UMA, but is a different implementation from our past offerings. While T-Mobile’s current Wi-Fi Calling solution which operates on BlackBerry smartphones, for instance, seamlessly hands off calls from T-Mobile’s network to Wi-Fi networks, Wi-Fi Calling for Android does not.

A pre-installed application from T-Mobile will allow customers to make and receive voice calls and SMS over an accessible Wi-Fi connection.  This provides customers with better in-door coverage and in some cases may provide the ability to make voice calls in locations where they weren’t able to do so previously.

For consumers, Wi-Fi Calling for Android increases coverage and uses voice minutes. [NOTE: calls originate on Wi-Fi, but are carried across T-Mobile’s network once beyond the initial Wi-Fi connection.]  T-Mobile also has plans for business which can help defer wireless minutes and provide cost savings.

Wi-Fi Calling will be available on the new T-Mobile myTouch, Motorola DEFY and others Android phones in the coming weeks. We are planning to expand Wi-Fi Calling for Android to as broad a selection of Android smartphones in our line-up as possible.  Éclair (2.0/2.1)  and Froyo (2.2) are the Android OS versions that currently support the application.

There you have it. Let us know your thoughts.

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