A recent article from fiercewireless.com addressed what wireless operators are calling: “The Next Big Frontier”: WiFi Calling. Ruckus Wireless CEO Selina Lo was asked to comment on the industry excitement surrounding WiFi calling and expressed her belief that WiFi calling will be a “long term trend”: “WiFi calling is definitely going to be a game changer in terms of service provider business models. T-Mobile was the ground-breaker in terms of seeing the potential for WiFi as a vehicle for voice services, though their vision was early in the market when they debuted Hotspot@Home WiFi calling (which was discontinued around 2010). T-Mobile’s pioneering, however, allowed them to be at the forefront of WiFi calling when the market was ripe and be the first carrier to say it will support WiFi calling on the iPhone. Verizon and AT&T followed suit announcing that their networks will support WiFi calling in 2015 – the largest carriers simply can’t ignore the demand for seamless WiFi calling.
WiFi calling has been around for quite awhile, in one fashion or another, but the difference is that now the market is ready to take WiFi calling mainstream and WiFi calling has carrier support. It is the seamless carrier experience that will allow WiFi calling to garner mainstream acceptance. Dave Fraser, CEO of Devicescape, was quoted in FierceWirelessTech discussing the market change:
“Being able to make voice calls over WiFi is the final thing that you weren’t able to do… Your data worked over WiFi the same as it did over cellular, all your apps worked the same, but making a voice call never worked. You had to use and over-the-top application like Skype. Now with this being completely seamless, you can do everything on WiFi that you can do on cellular, and its also waking up all the large operators. They’re looking now at how WiFi can be combined with their traditional network, so it’s a very good sign of things to come, and we are wonderfully enthusiastic about it.”
It is hard to comprehend how huge the last 6 months have been for the wireless industry. With the cellular carriers no longer having control over voice a whole slew of voice options are open for industries that are wrought with poor cellular coverage, namely MDU/ MTU buildings and commercial properties. If you are interested in a WiFi calling network for your property, contact us.