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What Is WIFI Calling?

by | Nov 17, 2023 | Wifi | 0 comments

WiFi calling is a telecommunications service that allows users to make and receive calls over a WiFi network instead of a traditional cellular network. This feature uses an internet connection to provide better call quality and coverage, especially in areas with weak cellular signals.

What is WiFi Calling? And How It Works

Ever found yourself in a spot with poor mobile coverage but a decent WiFi connection? Well, that’s where WiFi calling comes to the rescue! WiFi calling is, simply put, the ability to make voice calls through a WiFi network rather than relying on traditional cellular services. This nifty feature not only improves call quality but also extends coverage to places where mobile signal strength might be weak or even non-existent. In this article, I’ll dive into how this technology works, its benefits, and everything else you need to know about WiFi calling. So, let’s get started!

What is wifi calling and how does it really work

Key Takeaways

  • WiFi calling lets you make voice calls using a WiFi network instead of the cellular network
  • It’s compatible with most Android and iOS devices
  • Activating WiFi calling is simple and can be done within your phone settings
  • Improved call quality and coverage are among the top benefits of this technology
  • WiFi calling may help you save on mobile costs, especially while travelling
  • Some carriers offer free or bundled WiFi calling as part of their plans

A Brief Introduction to WiFi Calling

WiFi calling is an innovative calling feature that allows users to make voice calls and send text messages over a wireless internet connection rather than relying on cellular service. This technology is designed to provide a seamless experience, with WiFi calling integrated into most modern smartphones, including Android and iOS devices.

By default, when WiFi calling is enabled, the smartphone will automatically prioritise a WiFi network over a cellular connection during a call. This helps to conserve cellular data and often results in better call quality in areas where mobile service is weak or unavailable. Let’s take a closer look at the key aspects of this transformative technology.

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WiFi calling serves as a method to place voice calls over a wireless internet connection, circumventing the need for a traditional cellular network.

  1. Offers a user experience similar to regular calls
  2. Integrated into most modern smartphones, including Android and iOS devices
  3. Enables text messaging alongside voice calls
  4. Automatically prioritises WiFi networks over cellular connections
  5. Provides improved call quality in the absence of mobile service

WiFi calling has quickly gained popularity for its ability to bridge the gap between poor cellular service and high-quality communication. With an increasing number of smartphones and carriers incorporating this feature, the demand for WiFi calling is set to grow even further in the coming years.

Understanding How WiFi Calling Works

WiFi calling operates by transmitting voice calls as data packets over an internet connection via a WiFi network. This process involves converting the cellular signal into data packets, which is similar to the function of WiFi VoIP applications like Skype or WhatsApp. Unlike these applications, WiFi calling is embedded in the device’s calling feature and does not require additional apps. It leverages the Generic Access Network protocol to facilitate seamless connectivity.

best wifi calling
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The Behind-the-Scenes Mechanics

The mechanics of how WiFi calling works are rooted in the technology known as WiFi enabled voice over IP (VoIP). When a call is initiated, the user’s voice is transitioned into a digital format, which is then sent as cellular data packets through a WiFi network. These packets are transmitted to the recipient’s device, which converts the data back into audible sound. This ensures that the call functions seamlessly across different smartphone models and operating systems, including WiFi calling on Android and WiFi calling on iPhone.

Switching Between WiFi and Cellular Networks

With WiFi calling enabled, a smartphone will automatically select the strongest available connection for making a call, whether it is a cellular network or a WiFi connection. This ensures optimal network connectivity at all times. The transition between WiFi and cellular networks is designed to be smooth and unnoticeable to the user. However, depending on the specific service provider and network conditions, there may be instances where calls could drop when moving out of WiFi range.

Security Aspects of WiFi Calling

When it comes to security, WiFi calling is designed to keep users safe from unauthorized access to their communications. Regardless of whether the call is transmitted over a cellular network or WiFi, the voice data is encrypted by the mobile carrier. This encryption ensures that calls remain secure, even when connected to public or unsecured WiFi networks.

WiFi calling incorporates security measures such as encryption to protect users from unauthorized access to their voice data.

As more people embrace the convenience and improved connectivity offered by WiFi calling, it is essential to understand the underlying mechanics and the security measures integrated into the service. These features not only optimize voice clarity and connection quality but also provide peace of mind for users concerned about the security of their communications.

The Benefits of Using WiFi Calling

As an essential tool for modern communication, WiFi calling offers numerous advantages over traditional mobile services. In this section, we explore the key benefits of WiFi calling for users, businesses, and carriers alike.

  1. Improved call quality in areas with limited network coverage
  2. Convenient seamless integration with existing phone numbers
  3. Infrastructure advancements enhancing voice quality

“WiFi calling is a game-changer for communication in areas with poor cellular coverage or during mobile network outages, ensuring consistent call quality and accessibility.”

The enhanced bandwidth offered by WiFi networks often allows for higher call quality compared to traditional cellular connections, especially in areas with limited coverage. This improvement in voice quality is a significant factor that encourages users to adopt WiFi calling as part of their daily communication.

Another notable advantage of WiFi calling is the simplicity of keeping your existing phone number. WiFi calls are placed using the user’s existing phone number, negating the need for additional credentials and offering a seamless experience.

Infrastructure advancements, such as Telstra’s prioritisation of WiFi Calling traffic on their broadband modems, have played a crucial role in further improving the voice quality of calls. These developments contribute to the growing adoption of WiFi calling in Australia and around the world.

“As a result of infrastructure advancements and prioritisation, WiFi Calling offers reliable, high-quality communication, even in remote locations with limited cellular coverage.”

Categories Benefits of WiFi Calling
Call Quality Enhanced voice quality during calls due to high bandwidth
Convenience Seamless integration with existing phone numbers; no need for additional credentials or applications
Infrastructure Advancements Improved voice quality due to optimised network prioritisation

With its numerous advantages, including improved call quality, seamless integration, and optimised infrastructure, WiFi calling provides users with a highly accessible and reliable communication option. As a result, WiFi calling is likely to become increasingly popular as an attractive alternative to traditional cellular services.

Comparing WiFi Calling with Traditional Mobile Services

As mobile communication continues to evolve, users have access to a wider array of options for staying connected. Among these is WiFi calling, which offers a reliable alternative to traditional cellular calls. Understanding the key differences between WiFi calling vs traditional calling can help individuals and businesses make informed decisions about their phone service needs.

wifi calling in the city

Traditional mobile services rely on cellular networks to transmit voice calls, with signal strength dependent upon proximity to cell towers. In contrast, WiFi calling leverages internet connectivity—enabling users to make calls even when cellular coverage is limited or entirely unavailable. This is particularly advantageous in locations where mobile network coverage is inadequate or non-existent.

In essence, WiFi calling empowers users to extend their coverage indoors, remain connected during mobile network outages, and even travel internationally without incurring exorbitant roaming fees.

Comparison between WiFi calling and traditional mobile services highlights the following key differences:

  1. Connectivity
  2. Call quality
  3. Cost-efficiency
  4. Geographic compatibility


WiFi calling holds an advantage over traditional cellular calls when it comes to connectivity. The ability to utilise a WiFi network to connect with friends, family, and business associates means that users can enjoy more reliable connections in areas where cellular reception is weak or non-existent.

Call quality

The quality of voice calls can also benefit from the implementation of WiFi calling. By leveraging internet connectivity, users can experience improved call clarity and reliability, compared to traditional mobile services.


Using WiFi calling instead of traditional mobile services can also prove to be cost-efficient for users. By making voice calls over a WiFi network, individuals and businesses can potentially realise cost savings and minimise their use of mobile data plans.

Geographic compatibility

WiFi calling offers improved compatibility for users who are travelling internationally or residing in locations with inadequate cellular coverage. With the ability to utilise any available WiFi network, users can navigate these challenges and maintain connectivity.

Category Traditional Mobile Services WiFi Calling
Connectivity Depends on cellular signal Utilises any available WiFi network
Call quality Subject to cellular network strength Typically offers improved call clarity
Cost-efficiency Can be costly, especially for international roaming Can save costs on mobile plans and roaming fees
Geographic compatibility Limited by cellular coverage and roaming agreements Accessible anywhere with a WiFi network

Overall, the choice between WiFi calling and traditional mobile services depends on individual needs and circumstances. While traditional calling remains the preferred choice when cellular coverage is strong, WiFi calling can prove advantageous in situations where users require more reliable and cost-effective communication methods.

Devices That Support WiFi Calling

As technology advances, many smartphones now offer built-in support for WiFi calling. This feature is accessible on both Android and iOS devices, with slight variations in enabling and disabling the service. Let’s look at WiFi calling compatibility and activation on both Android phones and iPhones.

“WiFi calling is supported on a wide range of Android and iOS devices, providing users with a convenient solution to make calls over a WiFi connection.”

Compatibility with Android Phones

For Android phones, compatibility for WiFi calling depends on two factors: the device must be WiFi calling-capable, and the mobile carrier must support the feature. Most contemporary Android devices are equipped with WiFi calling functionality. To enable or disable the service, Android users can usually find the settings within their Phone app or under Network settings.

  1. Locate and open the Phone app or Network settings.
  2. Select Call settings or Advanced settings.
  3. Toggle on or off the WiFi calling feature in the options.

This process allows Android users to activate or deactivate WiFi calling with ease.

How iPhones Facilitate WiFi Calling

Similarly, iPhones provide users with a simple solution to enable WiFi calling. Following the iPhone 5C, Apple’s range of iPhones has increasingly supported this feature. To activate or deactivate the feature, iPhone users can find the settings within the Settings app under the Phone section.

  1. Open the Settings app on the iPhone.
  2. Scroll to find and select Phone.
  3. Toggle on or off the WiFi calling feature in the options.

This allows iPhone users to effortlessly turn on or off WiFi calling as needed.

Overall, Android phones and iPhones offer straightforward processes for enabling or disabling WiFi calling. With growing support for this feature among smartphones and mobile carriers, users can experience the benefits of improved call quality and coverage through WiFi networks.

Setting Up WiFi Calling on Your Device

Activating WiFi calling on your smartphone is a straightforward process, regardless of whether you have an Android or iOS device. By following a few simple steps, you can easily set up WiFi calling and enjoy the myriad of benefits it offers. Let’s explore the steps for each type of device:

  1. Android smartphones

On Android devices, setting up WiFi calling typically involves the following steps:

  • Pull down the notification shade.
  • Tap on the gear icon to open the Settings menu.
  • Look for the “WiFi Calling” option, which may be found under “Network & Internet” or “Connections” depending on your device.
  • Activate the WiFi Calling toggle to enable the feature.
  1. iOS devices (iPhones)

For iPhones, setting up WiFi calling can be done using these steps:

  • Open the Settings app.
  • Scroll down and select “Phone.”
  • Tap on “WiFi Calling.”
  • Enable the “WiFi Calling on This iPhone” toggle to activate the feature.

Once you have successfully activated WiFi calling on your device, it will prioritise the WiFi network for voice calls whenever a strong signal is available. As a result, you can enjoy seamless connectivity, improved call quality, and potentially save on your mobile plan usage.

Note: Ensure your device and carrier both support WiFi calling before attempting to activate the feature. Check with your carrier for compatibility information.

In conclusion, setting up WiFi calling on your smartphone is a simple and hassle-free process. By following the appropriate steps for your Android or iOS device, you can enjoy the numerous advantages of WiFi calling. Happy calling!

a stylish Spanish woman walking on a street in Sydney, Australia, making a WIFI call.
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Troubleshooting Common WiFi Calling Issues

As convenient as Wi-Fi calling on your smartphone can be, it is not immune to calling issues and connectivity problems. Users may sometimes encounter difficulties connecting to WiFi calling, which could stem from a variety of causes, including incompatible internet service providers, restrictive firewall settings, or unreliable public WiFi hotspots. This section aims to provide some guidance on troubleshooting WiFi calling problems and finding viable solutions.

One common issue is the inability to make calls when in areas with multiple area codes or when the phone switches back to a weaker 3G connection. To address these issues, you can try checking for VoLTE settings, adjust location codes, or move closer to the WiFi source to improve signal strength. In the following table, you will find more solutions to common WiFi calling problems.

Problem Solution
Incompatible Internet Service Provider Contact your ISP to inquire if they support WiFi calling, and consider switching to a compatible provider if necessary.
Restrictive Firewall Settings Contact your network administrator to unblock necessary ports or adjust firewall settings to allow WiFi calling traffic.
Unreliable Public WiFi Hotspots Verify your login credentials, check WiFi signal strength, or try connecting to an alternative WiFi network for better performance.
Weak 3G Connection Disable and re-enable WiFi calling on your smartphone, switch networks manually, or check for device updates that may improve connectivity.

It’s important to remember that while WiFi calling is an excellent solution in many scenarios, it may not always provide the perfect calling experience. However, by identifying common issues and applying the appropriate troubleshooting steps, you can effectively minimize connectivity problems and continue enjoying the benefits of WiFi calling on your smartphone.

WiFi Calling Costs and Considerations

As you explore the advantages of WiFi calling, it’s crucial to understand the associated costs and considerations. While WiFi calling itself does not typically incur additional charges, certain factors such as carrier policies and international call rates can affect the final cost. This section will help you gain insight into WiFi calling costs on popular devices like Samsung smartphones, WiFi data usage implications, and carrier-specific features such as Telstra WiFi calling.

“While WiFi calling can potentially save money on calling and data plans, it’s important to be aware of any additional charges, especially when making international calls or using public WiFi hotspots.”

Carrier-specific policies: Different carriers have varying charges and policies related to WiFi calling. For instance, Verizon offers free WiFi calls within the US, with charges applying to international or service-center premium calls. In direct contrast, Telstra does not charge for WiFi calling or SMS when using their fixed broadband connection. Therefore, it is essential to review your carrier’s policy to make informed decisions about usage.

Public WiFi hotspot charges: While WiFi calls generally use your home or office WiFi connection, it’s possible to use public WiFi hotspots for such calls. However, some public hotspots might charge access fees, which you should factor in when making WiFi calls in public spaces.

International call rates: Despite the potential cost savings of WiFi calling, international calls are often billed at long-distance rates. It’s essential to stay informed of your carrier’s international call charges to avoid surprise expenses on your monthly bill.

WiFi calling on Samsung: Samsung smartphones are popular for their seamless integration of WiFi calling features. However, carrier-specific fees and calling rates may apply depending on the user’s location and the destination of the call.

WiFi data usage: Although WiFi calling uses data packets transmitted over the internet, the actual data usage is negligible in most cases. Still, it’s a good idea to monitor your WiFi data consumption, especially if you have a limited broadband plan or frequently make long-duration calls over WiFi.

  1. Study your carrier’s policies on WiFi calling charges, international call rates, and any additional fees.
  2. Be aware of public WiFi hotspot access fees that may apply to your WiFi calls.
  3. Monitor your WiFi data usage, especially during extended or frequent calls.
  4. Stay informed about device-specific features, such as WiFi calling on Samsung smartphones and the associated costs.

In conclusion, WiFi calling offers a convenient and cost-effective alternative to traditional cellular calls, but it is essential to stay informed about your carrier’s policies, applicable fees, and any potential data usage implications. By understanding these factors, you can make well-informed decisions and enjoy the full benefits of WiFi calling.


WiFi calling proves to be a powerful solution for overcoming the limitations of cellular networks, particularly in areas with poor cellular coverage. It provides the convenience of traditional phone calls while offering additional benefits such as enhanced call quality and potential cost savings. With the majority of modern smartphones and major carriers supporting this feature, WiFi calling has become an indispensable service for both personal and business communication alike.

Setting up WiFi calling is a simple process, and troubleshooting common issues can be easily managed. With our useful WiFi calling setup guide, getting started should be a breeze. Be sure to explore different WiFi calling provider options to find the best fit for your communication needs. The variety of plans and pricing available ensures that you can choose a provider that meets both your personal and professional requirements without breaking the bank.

Consider WiFi calling as a valuable addition to your communication arsenal, enhancing your ability to stay connected with friends, family, and colleagues no matter where you are. Given the many wifi calling benefits, it’s worth taking the time to familiarise yourself with this technology and leverage it to your advantage. As a result, both your personal and business interactions can benefit from the increased reliability and quality offered by WiFi calling.


What is WiFi Calling, and how does it work?

WiFi Calling is a service that allows you to make and receive voice calls and text messages using a WiFi network instead of traditional cellular service. It works by converting your voice into data packets transmitted over the WiFi network, providing an alternative method of communication for smartphones in areas with poor or no cellular service.

Is WiFi Calling secure?

Yes, WiFi Calling is secure. Mobile carriers encrypt your voice data, whether it’s transmitted over a cellular network or WiFi. This encryption ensures secure communication even when connected to public or unsecured WiFi networks.

What are the benefits of using WiFi Calling?

Benefits of WiFi Calling include improved call quality, especially in areas with poor cellular coverage, automatic switching between WiFi and cellular networks, potential savings on mobile plans, and most importantly, it doesn’t typically incur additional costs.

Can I use WiFi Calling on Android and iPhone devices?

Yes, most contemporary Android and iPhone devices support WiFi Calling. However, the feature requires both the device and mobile carrier to be compatible. You can find the WiFi Calling settings in the Phone app or under Network settings for Android devices, and in the Settings app under the Phone section for iPhones.

How do I set up WiFi Calling on my device?

Setting up WiFi Calling is simple. For Android devices, pull down the notification shade and navigate to the WiFi Calling setting. For iOS devices, open the Settings app, go to the Phone section, and enable WiFi Calling. Keep in mind that both your device and carrier need to support the feature for it to work.

What should I do if I encounter issues with WiFi Calling?

Common issues with WiFi Calling include problems connecting due to incompatible ISPs or restrictive firewall settings, as well as dropped calls when moving out of WiFi range. To resolve these issues, check for VoLTE settings, adjust location codes, or move closer to the WiFi source for better signal strength.

Are there any costs associated with WiFi Calling?

While WiFi Calling itself typically doesn’t incur additional charges, there may be fees associated with specific carriers or public WiFi hotspots. International calls are generally billed at long-distance rates. It is essential to check your specific carrier for their policies regarding WiFi Calling costs.

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Jason Kearney

Jason Kearney

Head Internet Technician

Jason Kearney is the Head Technician at SECURE A COM, with qualifications spanning NBN, ADSL, phone, and data cabling. Starting as an electrician, Jason quickly delved into the telecommunications sector, leading crucial projects like the rehabilitation of the Telstra network. With credentials in both managerial and technical aspects, he now specialises in phone line and NBN fault location and repair, serving both homes and businesses with effective and personalised telecommunications solutions

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