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[ NNSquad ] Re: Wi-Fi Calling!
[ This is not a Samsung-specific feature. T-Mobile reportedly rolled out similar functionality for a variety of their high-end smartphones (including the HTC-built G2) a couple of months ago I believe. I've been meaning to look into the security of the protocols being used.
-- Lauren Weinstein NNSquad Moderator ]
The T-Mobile Samsung Vibrant upgrade has a very interesting feature = =E2=80=93 a Wi-Fi calling application. This means you can use your = T-Mobile account even if you don=E2=80=99t have T-Mobile coverage as = long as you get Wi-Fi access. This dramatically improves the ability to = make calls.
Admittedly you=E2=80=99re warned that you will be using =E2=80=9Cplan = minutes=E2=80=9D which is a separate policy issue. Almost by accident it = renders femto cells moot. For those traveling in Paris near a park for = example you can use the available Wi-Fi coverage. The application allows = you to set preference for cellular vs. Wi-Fi as the preferred means.
The upgrade itself is interesting =E2=80=93 I only found it by searching = the web rather than navigating from the T-Mobile home screen and I only = know about it from having a helpful store manager.
You can=E2=80=99t do it over the air =E2=80=93 you must use their Kies = software which, despite Samsung=E2=80=99s claims, does not work on = Windows 7. But I did scrounge up an XP machine and on the second try got = it to work =E2=80=93 hint =E2=80=93 do a hard reboot first.
Why not OTA? I=E2=80=99d like to know. Is T-Mobile charging Samsung for = =E2=80=9Cair minutes=E2=80=9D. With Wi-Fi calling you=E2=80=99d think = that they would want people to upgrade their phones. Perhaps = it=E2=80=99s nothing nefarious and the fact that I had to do a hard = reboot is part of the issue of Samsung vs. software. I have software = upgrade problems on my Samsung TV too and each model has a different = version of the software (see http://rmf.vc/ces2011.nn for more on this).
-- Richard Bennett