Sprint introduces Wi-Fi calling, texting to improve service coverage

By on February 21, 2014, 2:30 PM
sprint, wi-fi, texting, wireless carrier, wi-fi calling

Sprint on Friday announced a new Wi-Fi calling and messaging service that the carrier claims will improve overall network coverage. The service, which allows subscribers to make voice calls as well as send and receive text messages when not in range of a Sprint service tower, is initially launching on just two handsets.

The service will allow users to log into a home or public Wi-Fi network which could be a boon to users in areas where Sprint’s service is subpar. Additionally, minutes used over Wi-Fi won’t count against plan minutes, assuming of course you’re still on a limited-minute plan and not an unlimited bucket. All domestic calling and messaging is free although standard CDMA international rates apply for international calls.

Sprint points out that once the service is activated, everything is seamless and happens in the background. For example, if you are at home and on Wi-Fi, your phone will automatically use that option instead of the cellular option. Don’t expect the phone to automatically transition from cellular to Wi-Fi and vice versa during calls, however.

It’s a service that T-Mobile customers have enjoyed for years.

The two Samsung smartphones in question, the Galaxy Mega and the Galaxy S4 Mini, will receive over-the-air updates in the next couple of weeks to enable the service. We’re told the service will roll out to other devices over the course of the year.

User Comments: 5

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JC713 JC713 said:

This is very interesting. Very excited to see how this works out.

madboyv1, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I need this right now. I need this right now. I need this right now. I need this right now.

No seriously, I've been using a Sprint Airave device that "extends" my service range using GPS and my internal network at home... but this effectively does the same thing via software, and will likely be much more reliable than the Airave, and it means one less thing physically plugged into my network.

I can't wait for this to land on my HTC One.

Guest said:

Interceptions over wireless connections possibly?

Guest said:

So Sprint is doing what Republic Wireless spent the last few years working out how to do on Sprint's network? How is this news if others do it using the Sprint network already?

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

T-Mobile does this since 2011. Wasn't the great although I can' use T-Mobile in rural areas is the worst part of the service. Only Verizon and AT&T first and second tier communication service works here. But my understanding they all share the same cellular tower network that stands so tall.

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