(NBC) Since cell phones first hit the market, wireless carriers have been competing to offer better coverage.
Verizon aired the popular “Can you hear me now? Good” commercials trying to convince consumers they had the most reliable network. As all cell phone users know, zero bars can be frustrating.
That’s one reason T-Mobile is making the push for WIFI calling.
“WIFI calling lets a phone user send & receive both phone calls and text messages but they come over a WIFI connection rather than a cellular connection.” Says NBCNews.com Senior Tech Writer, Julianne Pepitone. It’s a feature T-Mobile has offered since 2007.
“It’s back in the spotlight because Apple is now offering WIFI calling as an option on the iphone 6 the iphone 6 plus.” Says Pepitone
The feature is built into T-Mobile’s newest phones. Calls Switch seamlessly between WIFI and cellular networks when needed. But keep in mind WIFI calling may not work for everyone.
“If you want to use WIFI calling as a built in feature you do have to have both a phone and a wireless carrier that support it” says Pepitone.
And more wireless carriers are offering WIFI calling as an option. Sprint now offers it for some of their Android-powered devices.
“Both AT&T and Verizon are planning to offer WIFI calling sometime in 2015” saysPepitone
The feature may appeal to customers in rural locales or areas plagued by spotty coverage. But WIFI calling and texting could also help users save money on their wireless plans.
“It doesn’t count against your text messaging allotment or your plan minutes.” says Pepitone
Another reason WIFI calling could connect with a bigger audience.