enable wi-fi calling

In a text message sent today to its eligible customers, AT&T announced that those who have activated the Wi-Fi Calling feature on their iPhone can now make and receive phone calls from and to the US at no charge when traveling internationally, assuming they have first updated to iOS 9.3 and installed the newly available carrier update.

This marks a small yet important change to how users can benefit from Wi-Fi Calling. Up until now, Wi-Fi calling for AT&T customers restricted them to using the service only from the U.S., Puerto Rico, or U.S. Virgin Islands. But now, it is opened to any country (except for a few exceptions), meaning an AT&T Wi-Fi Calling user can make calls to the US, or receive calls from the US anywhere in the world as long as there is a Wi-Fi connection.

The message I personally received mentioned:

With the latest software update for your phone you can use Wi-Fi Calling when traveling outside the U.S.  This means you can call back to the U.S. or receive incoming calls, with no airtime charges.  When you call international numbers, your rates will be the same as those in your smartphone plan or your international package. For details visit att.com/wificalling

It’s important to highlight that this feature can only work for calls and text messages sent or received from/to the US. Making a Wi-Fi call to an international phone number will still be charged extra.

It is just as important to note that in order to take advantage of this new international feature, users must be using iOS 9.3, and must also download the carrier update that should pop up after updating to the latest version of iOS.

As noted above, Wi-Fi Calling will work in most countries, except for China, Saudi Arabia, India, Turkey, Israel, United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Pakistan, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.

For more information, visit AT&T’s Wi-Fi calling page, and check out our tutorial on how to activate Wi-Fi calling for AT&T.

  • Nathan

    This is how it should’ve been in the first place, honestly.

  • pnh

    I wonder if this will work on cruise ships if you buy their WiFi service.

    • It should work anywhere you have Wi-Fi (except those countries)

  • ShawnTXDFW

    I updated to 9.3 and haven’t been asked to do the carrier update. How can I go about asking the phone to do the carrier update manually? I got the text message today reguarding the feature but still nothing about the carrier update.

    • Bryan Callahan

      Go to settings>general>about

      • ShawnTXDFW

        I went there and I see this… When I click on Carrier it changes to IMS Status > Voice & SMS. Is this the latest update though?! If it is or isn’t I still wasn’t asked to do a Carrier update.

      • Bryan Callahan

        Mine also says AT&T 24.1 so I guess it automatically installed the carrier update. You should be all set!

  • Crazy 9.3 update requires a SIM card after install. First update that’s happened to me. Going to be busy fixing lots of phones that are ipods because of that.

  • Jamessmooth

    ugh that North Korean one is kind of a deal breaker for me.

  • Burge

    In the image it says about billing. Yet you say at no charge. Surly roaming fees might apply because after all you are using the device abroad and the call time comes from your allowance when using wifi calling.

    • Chris

      They would only take note of where the call occurred for analytics I guess, in any case – Wi-Fi calling should always just count towards your plan limits.

      • Burge

        And your plan will be when your in your home country. Unless you have a plan that includes other areas.

        Wifi calling uses your allowance so would you not be billed for roaming if your plan doesn’t cover this.

  • IlIl

    I wonder if using wifi with US VPN can avoid international charges.

    • RayRayBeav

      That would be good to know.

  • Tom

    is it possible to stay on my ios 9.0.2, keeping my jailbreak on 6s plus, and just only update the carrier settings instead of installing 9.3?

  • psghosh

    So it works “everywhere” except China, India, and a few other countries that would take advantage of it the most…..