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  • Web phones

    http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/01/iphone-voip/

    Apple updated the iPhone software development kit on Wednesday to allow internet telephony apps to work on the 3G network. The little-noticed move effectively unlocks the ability for the iPhone — and the upcoming iPad — to be used as web phones.
    “I commend Apple’s decision to open its platform to 3G calling, an action that will create new opportunities for entrepreneurs and provide more choices for consumers,” said FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski.

    Previously, Apple’s policy had prohibited VOIP functionality on 3G networks — Skype, for example, was crippled so that its voice calling capabilities would only work over a Wi-Fi connection. The only way to use VOIP iPhone apps over 3G was by hacking (i.e., jailbreaking) the device.

    Apple and AT&T had a secret agreement to ban apps that would let iPhone users make phone calls using the 3G data connection to prevent cutting into AT&T’s profits. That agreement was revealed in summer of 2009 when the FCC asked Apple and AT&T to explain why Google’s Voice app was rejected from the iPhone store.
    This sounds like a boon. I've been reading about people buying Android phones with just a data plan and using VOIP to make all their calls cheaply. You could even tie this together with the open source Asterisk PBX and make your phone another extension in your office system.
    Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

    snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

    Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

  • #2
    Re: Web phones

    you can actually buy an android phone with no data or voice plan if you are able to readily access wifi and make calls that way using GV. quite the nice tool. too bad apple is again behind the power curve on the issue.

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    • #3
      Re: Web phones

      Originally posted by Ferris Bueller View Post
      you can actually buy an android phone with no data or voice plan if you are able to readily access wifi and make calls that way using GV. quite the nice tool. too bad apple is again behind the power curve on the issue.
      Apple's certainly not behind the curve, it's their relationship with ATT that is, er, was, inhibiting this practice. I know a guy at work that uses his iPod Touch as his only "cell" phone. Sure, he has to find a hotspot to make or take calls, but it works for him...
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      • #4
        Re: Web phones

        thats pretty much what i'm getting at. ATT is the primary reason that apple has been hindered thus far with the iphone. from backroom deals brokered by ATT because theyre scared wifi calling is going to cut into their profit share, to the fact that ATT's 3G network cant handle the load iphones put on it (god help them when the iPad gets rolling or they pick up an android device, which is imminent), ATT is the centerpiece of the problem. the iphone could have been vastly more successful for apple had they not bound their hands with ATT. i guess the point is, that apple isnt behind the power curve because of lack of capability, but because they put themselves (unwittingly?) behind the eight ball with their choice of carriers.

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        • #5
          Re: Web phones

          Is there another carrier that's any better? I figure they're all scared that their cash cow of overpriced access is about to evaporate.
          Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

          snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

          Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

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          • #6
            Re: Web phones

            TMO, Sprint and Verizon all had no problems with GV of Gizmo5 being on the android market to their subscribers (and yes, the carriers can request that google not permit access to certain applications to their customers). So, yes, apparently there are carriers that are better.

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            • #7
              Re: Web phones

              Originally posted by ScratchMonkey View Post
              Is there another carrier that's any better? I figure they're all scared that their cash cow of overpriced access is about to evaporate.
              I've had zero problems with ATT here in DFW, but every local area can be different. VZW is still struggling to catch up here, but have made great inroads over the last two years. T-Mobile is the absolute worst. I don't get any signal at all in my suburb. Sprint is just behind ATT.
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              • #8
                Re: Web phones

                I was quite happy that VOIP apps are now allowed over 3G, although this certainly isn't going to do anything good for AT&T's already crippled infrastructure.

                The only downside is that this still doesn't make the Skype app practical on the iPhone for most uses since you can't receive Skype calls unless you already have the app open. If all you are concerned with is making calls, however, this will be great.
                Twisted Firestarter
                a.k.a |TG| Harkonian
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