Author Topic: WiFi Calling - how does it work?  (Read 1042 times)

slope

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WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« on: August 03, 2019, 04:52:45 pm »
How does this actually work?

Or in my case, intermittently and therefore annoying >:(

When I recently decided to go all smart phony I heard about WiFi Calling. I live in rural Snowdonia snug in a rather beautiful valley that doesn't have any mobile phone masts/coverage.

I've got a one year old iPhone SE (Wifi Calling compatible), FTTP broadband!!, an iMobile (WiFi Calling enabled) £4 per month SIM :)

So the WiFi Calling connection either works or it doesn't = annoying. It changes throughout any given day :-\

BT, whose router and broadband I have, suggested setting up the iPhone and router to access 5Ghz and 2.4Ghz signals. The former frequency works best most of the time. But sometimes the latter will work when the former doesn’t!

On the iPhone itself it shows the radiating signal graphic, either preceded by "No Service" or “iD WiFi Call”.



Anyone have any idea where the glitch/problem might lie?

I have tried powering off the iPhone etc - to no avail

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2019, 05:06:13 pm »
I've one subbie in rural Cheshire who has this.
Connectivity with him is, at best, a bit hit and miss.
My experience is anecdote, rather than data.

vorsprung

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2019, 05:44:42 pm »
Not sure what you are asking exactly

A wifi connection has to exist for wifi calling to work

So if you are at home and the wifi works to your phone then the calling should work

If you are somewhere without wifi or in a wifi deadspot then the calling will not work
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slope

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2019, 05:57:54 pm »
WiFi works fine and dandy. My iMac is connected via it and ethernet if I so wish. Plus works with visitors' appliances.

With WiFi my iPhone and iMac can connect and see each other.

However WiFi Calling is randomly hit and miss between the iPhone and the router

So trying to figure out whether it's -

a) a rogue SIM?

b) a router issue?

c) or something else?

There are similar unresolved issues with other iDMobile SIM users - but that could be another red herring?

Hence me trying to understand HOW the various WiFi Calling 'connections' are made

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2019, 06:59:30 pm »
I have similar issues with my phone when trying to use it at home, to the extent that turning the wifi off when making a phone call seems to be the only way.
My previous phone (or maybe the one before that) managed to make perfectly sensible calls via hotel wifi on more than one occasion.
All iPhones, all reasonably up to date models for the time, and the OS is always the latest official version.

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2019, 08:33:20 pm »
What network does iMobile use?
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Feanor

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2019, 08:41:26 pm »
IME, the answer is 'not very well'.
At work, the mobile signal is poor at best, but I have rock solid WiFi.
The phone is usually on WiFi calling fallback.
The success rate of calls is sub 50 percent.
It rings, but the resulting call is silent.

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2019, 09:53:14 pm »
When I was with BT Mobile Wi-fi calling was pretty solid, with the occasional blip. I switched to iD in jan and it’s never really worked well for me since. I’ve recently stopped getting it at all. I think it’s an issue with their end, but I haven’t done any debugging yet - I plan on doing some traffic capture and seeing whether the IPSec tunnels coming up properly.

slope

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2019, 08:06:41 am »

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2019, 06:51:37 pm »
I suggest putting your phone in airplane mode, with wifi on.

Otherwise it will be trying to make a connection with a mobile mast (and failing), instead of using the reliable wifi signal.
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caerau

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2019, 05:08:41 pm »
I suggest putting your phone in airplane mode, with wifi on.

Otherwise it will be trying to make a connection with a mobile mast (and failing), instead of using the reliable wifi signal.




Wowser, just idly lurking on this thread as I've had frustrations with WiFi calling and this has just hit a 'BING!' with me as a suggestion  :thumbsup:




(Now of course it won't work when I try it :'( [size=78%]) [/size]
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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2019, 05:11:53 pm »
I suggest putting your phone in airplane mode, with wifi on.

Otherwise it will be trying to make a connection with a mobile mast (and failing), instead of using the reliable wifi signal.




Wowser, just idly lurking on this thread as I've had frustrations with WiFi calling and this has just hit a 'BING!' with me as a suggestion  :thumbsup:




(Now of course it won't work when I try it :'( [size=78%]) [/size]
With my phone when I go into aeroplane mode, wifi gets turned off.
I can then turn wifi back on by itself. Mobile connection remains off.

Incidentally, this decreases battery consumption.
<i>Marmite slave</i>

caerau

  • SR x 3 - PBP fail but 1090 km - hey - not too bad
Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2019, 05:20:05 pm »
Wifi remains on with mine when in airplane mode. :thumbsup:
It's a reverse Elvis thing.

slope

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #13 on: August 09, 2019, 03:23:23 pm »
Rather strangely, since my original post on 3rd August, every time I either, a) switch on my iPhone in the morning or b) return home from the other world which has mobile phone masts/coverage - the WiFi Calling has auto connected and worked without its usual well maybe sometimes attitude often changing its mind a few times during a single day.

Small and perhaps short lived blessings  :)

I'd still like to know how it works though

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2019, 03:25:56 pm »
Wifi calling has nowt to do with the SIM card. You can do it from a tablet if you want.  On wifi calling it basically connects over the Internet to your mobile providers servers, logs you in with the account, and routes calls that way inbound and outbound. If your ISP deprioritises the telephony traffic or the servers the other end are shit, doesn't matter how good the wifi signal.

slope

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #15 on: August 09, 2019, 03:58:31 pm »
Wifi calling has nowt to do with the SIM card. You can do it from a tablet if you want.  On wifi calling it basically connects over the Internet to your mobile providers servers, logs you in with the account, and routes calls that way inbound and outbound. If your ISP deprioritises the telephony traffic or the servers the other end are shit, doesn't matter how good the wifi signal.

Thanks phil w for the explanation  :thumbsup:

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #16 on: August 09, 2019, 04:50:25 pm »
Wifi calling has nowt to do with the SIM card.

Slightly pedantically, the SIM card is still required to authenticate you to the mobile provider. But other than that, as you say your device basically sends the data it would normally send over the radio interface down an encrypted tunnel over the internet to your mobile provider.

Jaded

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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2019, 06:18:01 pm »
My experience would be that the early implementation of Wi-Fi calling was flawed, and the software would try to switch too much, resulting in dropouts. I found moving from the room that had my router in it to another one would caus a dropout, even though I have good mobile service throughout the house.

It is better now and I imagine that Apple have, in their normal way, tweaked the software to work without telling anyone.
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Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #18 on: August 09, 2019, 08:53:24 pm »
Wifi calling has nowt to do with the SIM card. You can do it from a tablet if you want.  On wifi calling it basically connects over the Internet to your mobile providers servers, logs you in with the account, and routes calls that way inbound and outbound. If your ISP deprioritises the telephony traffic or the servers the other end are shit, doesn't matter how good the wifi signal.

Aint no QoS on the Internet.
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2019, 09:29:58 pm »
Also, WiFi (particularly with consumer-grade gear) is fundamentally poorly suited to this sort of thing, as it lacks any proper roaming capability, instead relying on the client to make arbitrary decisions about when would be a good time to reconnect.  Needless to say, the timing is impeccably inconvenient.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: WiFi Calling - how does it work?
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2019, 09:39:14 pm »
Wifi calling has nowt to do with the SIM card.

Slightly pedantically, the SIM card is still required to authenticate you to the mobile provider.

Even more pedantically, physical SIM cards aren't necessary any more. eSIMs are becoming more widespread and the latest phones provide support for them.
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