T-Mobile has announced a new way to call over WiFi, called “WiFi Un-Leashed”, which will allow users to make calls over public or private WiFi connections, for free.
This is the first of its kind in the United States, and over in the UK carrier EE is working on implementing this feature. Apple announced at their September 9 iPhone 6 event that this would be possible on the new phones.
It is definitely a T-Mobile move to make, considering the other three carriers are not interested in losing more of their call and data profits. T-Mobile has been the best carrier in the past year, thanks in part due to CEO John Legere, when it comes to customer satisfaction.
Call over WiFi will not doubt take some profit from the carriers, but the amount of “calls” being done in the traditional sense is low, with people using WhatsApp, Skype and even Facebook Messenger to make voice and video calls.
The problem is with WiFi, the carrier cannot even charge for data usage. T-Mobile doesn’t seem that bothered about this though, potentially because of the low amount of voice calls being made now, compared to five years ago.
The Voice Call Industry
We have seen a big dip in voice call on smartphones, since 2007. The amount of apps and messenger services available now puts voice call at the fifth most used feature on a phone.
T-Mobile is always looking for better PR, to make sure they are the most transparent and customer focused brand, but this is also T-Mobile essentially being ahead of the curve, before Verizon Wireless or AT&T.
Now, if AT&T or Verizon Wireless slap an extra $10 a month for calling over WiFi, people will call them out, heavily. T-Mobile has managed to keep customer satisfaction high and reduce the likelihood that other carriers will make this a paid service in one clean stroke.