At long last, AT&T
is loosening its grip on Apple's FaceTime
video conferencing technology over cellular connections. If you recall, FaceTime was limited to Wi-Fi when it was first debuted, and then in September 2012, AT&T said it would gradually roll out support
on cellular to sort of test the waters. Now it's ready to open the floodgates.
"As a result of ongoing testing, we're announcing AT&T will enable FaceTime over cellular at no extra charge for customers with any tiered data plan using a compatible iOS device," Mark Collins, AT&T's Senior Vice President of Data and Voice Products, stated in a blog post. "This means iPhone 4S customers with tiered plans will be able to make FaceTime calls over the AT&T cellular network."
Prior to today, FaceTime over cellular was free for customers with a Mobile Share plan and those with an LTE device
on tiered plans, a restriction that effectively meant iPhone 4S owners couldn't join in the fun. That's still the case as AT&T flips all the necessary switches and updates its systems, though the wireless carrier expects to have everything in order within the next couple of months.
"We have already begun updating our systems and processes and expect to start rolling the update out to customers on an ongoing basis beginning in the next couple of weeks. Customers do not need to do anything—the update will be applied automatically over the next few months," Collins added.