EE launches Wi-Fi calling with support for the Microsoft Lumia 640

UK mobile operator EE today announced the launch of Wi-Fi calling on supported hardware. For Windows Phones, the network is initially supporting the Microsoft Lumia 640. Should you happen to struggle with poor signal coverage indoors, this will be a handy new feature to take full advantage of.

What makes Wi-Fi calling from EE rather interesting is how the service utilizes the phone's normal dialler, making the feature accessible to those who aren't tech savvy to dive in and download apps or fiddle with numerous settings to activate said functionality. You don't require an extra app and there are no limitations. simply call and text as usual.

Wi-Fi calling is available from launch on the Lumia 640. More hardware will be added to the WiFi Calling range in the coming weeks. WiFi Calling will be available to EE pay monthly consumer and small business customers with compatible devices. It will also be available to corporate 4GEE customers with compatible devices this summer.

See the press release below for more details.

EE LAUNCHES WIFI CALLING TO MAKE CALLS AND TEXTS AVAILABLE IN EVERY HOME

  • EE launches UK's first WiFi Calling service to make calls and texts available in every WiFi-connected home
  • Over four million people across the UK who lose connection in at least one room in their home can benefit
  • WiFi Calling launching on Lumia 640 and Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge, and set to benefit more than five million EE customers by summer
  • The National Association of Estate Agents, the UK's leading body for professional estate agencies, says WiFi Calling can stop house sellers suffering from losing out due to poor mobile coverage

7th April 2015 – EE today announced the launch of WiFi Calling, making calls and texts available in every WiFi-connected home and small office in the UK.

The UK's first launch of WiFi Calling will help over four million people who say they lose mobile connection in at least one room in their house. The recent survey of connectivity in the home also found that a quarter of people in the UK work from home at least one day per week and 20 percent of those lose connectivity during the day, so WiFi Calling will be a big benefit to the country's increasingly mobile workforce.

As well as helping people across the UK in homes and small/home offices, WiFi Calling can also change the value of your home. Simon Gerrard, President, National Association of Estate Agents said: "Mobile coverage is becoming increasingly important to people when they're buying a house – innovations like this can help sellers ensure they are maximising the value of their home and are not losing out due to poor mobile coverage."

WiFi Calling from EE is not like 'over the top' services that enable calls using WiFi. WiFi Calling from EE uses the phone's normal dialler and contacts book to make calls, and the normal text button to send text messages. There is no need for an app, and friends don't need to be using the same closed user group services to talk to or message each other.

WiFi Calling from EE will be available from launch on the Lumia 640 and from Friday 10th April on the brand new Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. More new and existing devices will be added to the WiFi Calling range in the coming weeks, and by summer 2015 more than five million EE pay monthly customers will have access to WiFi Calling.

EE CEO Olaf Swantee said:

"Losing coverage at home is a major frustration, and WiFi Calling will make a real difference to millions of customers across the UK, from basement flats in London to the most rural homes in the country. Our customers want to be able to call and text no matter where they are, and they don't want to have to think about which app they need to use or if their friends have a particular third party service."

Research carried out by ICM on behalf of EE in March 2015 found almost one in ten people have one room or more in their home where they have no mobile connectivity, and this increases to 15 percent for those living in rural and semi-rural areas.

WiFi Calling will be available to EE pay monthly consumer and small business customers with compatible devices. WiFi Calling will be available to corporate 4GEE customers with compatible devices this summer.

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

40 Comments
  • The XL is going to be a hit, I guess.
  • Ya. As far as there are no issues with the device.Unlike 535 which has touch issues..
  • There's a new OS & Firmware update out for the 535 That apparently fixes it's on yesterday's posts.
  • I'm waiting for the XL here in Saudi Arabia .. It's price around 900 SR.
  • So how does it work? Are they going to use private wifi networks for this?
  • You just connect to any internet source and call
  • Enough of this teasing. I want Lumia 640 here in India
  • u can have it now http://www.windowscentral.com/microsoft-launches-lumia-640-and-640-xl-in...
  • When in ind**??
  • Say it loud mate!!!! 'INDIAAAAAA!!!!' :D be proud of your country!!! Nothing to feel ashamed off :)
  • Except this is about a UK carrier. So has absolutely nothing to do do with India. Nothing at all.
  • I'd rather live in god damn Mozambique then in India. One of the least civilized countries in the world... Now you can bite me with your indian crap...
  • Ooh please spare the people of Mozambique..poor souls, I hope the north Koreans catch hold of you and send you to some gulag of theirs..the world will bid good riddance to an arsehole :D
  • Launching today
  • When in Indonesia?
  • When In South Africaaaaaa
  • Soon *_*
  • Good saying...i m proud to be an indian...
  • What the hell does that have to do with this article or WC for that matter? -___-
  • Still waiting for flipkart to launch the 640 here in India
  • 640 should sell very well here in the UK and having this kind of service will help a lot. Was at Yorkshire Wildlife Park yesterday and saw a lot of 635's.
  • Looks good that a midrange phone has features you'd only expect on the high end :) also helps that EE might actually push some bloody windows phone sales!
  • Question is, will the WiFi calling only work on EE locked phones? Or will a phone connected to EE via Carphone Warehouse work as well?
  • I have read that you must by this handset from an EE shop as it needs to have small bit of software put on the device. On this occasion carphone warehouse is not the best seller.
  • ThreeUK has this already.
  • Not on Windows Phone it doesn't...
  • Nope, they have a completely different service. Much the same as 02's Tugo that was there before it. They are app based, very poor and unreliable on Windows Phone. What EE are offering is a service that uses functionality already built into the phone called UMA (i think). This does not require any apps or signal boosters, just a wifi connection.
  • Three? How do I get this?!
  • What is this phenomenon of no coverage on some room?
    UK problem only?
  • Too many planning restrictions in the UK & Northern Ireland leading to not enough phone masts going up in rural areas. Lets hope this isn't another false promise from EE. They did promise this service a long time ago!
  • my classmate's step-aunt makes $63 an hour on the internet. She has been out of work for 7 months but last month her income was $18908 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site~*~*~*~*~*http://www.netcash99.com/~*~*~*~*~* ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥
  • Yes, this is what I have been waiting for.... They promised this for last October
  • O2 has this already called TuGo. Although it's an app it supports Wi-Fi calling and texting
  • Nope, no wonder Daniel gets annoyed reading comments, read the article lol This is different type of service. No apps, no signal booster, no BS. What they have done is enabled already built in functionality that the phone has called UMA (i think that's what it is called) Tugo and such apps are fantastically unreliable. What happens with this EE service is you just connect to a WiFi network and you will have signal. No messing around with apps or anything. It's a much better solution to reception issues.
     
  • Tele2 already has it lol. It works in all a whole world and you dont have to pay for it.
  • Very good, this article is about EE in the UK though.
  • *dialler
  • The only worry I have is that it cannot switch method mid-stream, so if WiFi splutters, it won't switch on to 3g.
  • If the WIFI drops out and you have a 3G/4G signal it will automatically switchover. Tmobile in the USA already use this on some Lumia phones. I am guessing that we will get it either by an update or it maybe an app. I can't wait as I have a 930 that often can't get a signal on either 3G or 4G sometimes.
  • Hopefully Tmobile will release it this week