New iOS 6 FaceTime over cellular, AT&T won’t charge separately

If you’re an AT&T iOS device user and looking forward to iOS 6 then you may already heard of previous reports about a new feature coming to the next Apple mobile operating system, FaceTime over Cellular. This was unearthed in a beta version of iOS 6 but there were concerns that AT&T was planning to charge for the service. However news today is that AT&T will not be charging separately although there is one condition to this.

A few weeks ago when the FaceTime over Cellular feature was first spotted in iOS 6 beta 3, a screenshot showing evidence of it was revealed. This screenshot displayed a dialog box that appeared asking users to get in touch with AT&T if they wished to use FaceTime over Cellular and so seemed to indicate that AT&T may be planning to charge for it, especially as it was similar to the prompt that users receive when opting to enable the iPhone Personal Hotspot. As AT&T already charges for data under a separate plan this caused some consternation among consumers and we told how we felt there could be a big backlash against AT&T if the giant carrier went ahead with any plans to charge separately for FaceTime over Cellular.

News today comes from a MacRumors report on an AT&T statement that says it will not charge separately for FaceTime over Cellular. However a stipulation is that this new feature will only be accessible to customers using an AT&T Mobile Share data plan, new plans that are due to launch later this month. Those customers with legacy plans or unlimited data plans will therefore miss out. This will undoubtedly displease many customers but we should remember that many will be using the new Shared Data plans by later in the year and iDownload Blog points out the possibility that legacy customers may be compelled to switch to a new plan if they buy a new iPhone.

We’re also informed that Sprint will not be charging separately for FaceTime over Cellular either and that so far it seems that customers with unlimited data plans will be able to still use them. There’s no news yet on what Verizon’s stance will be regarding this. You may also remember our recent post on another new iOS 6 feature, Wi-Fi Plus Cellular, which will enable your device to switch back to cellular when a WiFi network is clogged. This also reflected concerns about what charges there might be for cellular data so it seems that those concerns can now be allayed.

We’d like to hear your thoughts on AT&T saying it will not charge separately for the FaceTime over Cellular feature. Are you concerned that the feature will require AT&T customers to be using one of the new Shared Data plans? Maybe you were planning to switch to a new plan anyway? Let us know with your comments.


8 thoughts on “New iOS 6 FaceTime over cellular, AT&T won’t charge separately”

  1. Claude Thomas says:

    So why should loyal ATT customers that have legacy unlimited plans be forced to miss out on a feature of the phone only because ATT is greedy… the contract we signed said unlimited data, not unlimited data as long as it doesn’t involve actually using data…. per normal… ATT continues to be less and less the carrier of choice… I for one will be changing carriers….

    1. sj says:

      That would be Sprint then, because Verizon doesn’t do new unlimited plans – it only has legacy unlimited data plans like AT&T and anything new goes under the sharing rip off. The bad thing about Sprint – no LTE 4G in 99% of their system.

      1. Master Jedi Alejandro says:

        You guys should move to Britain. We have 5 carriers that have the iPhone, plus another 2 that don’t, but have android phones, meaning prices are really competitive! 😀

    2. Amy Ayers says:

      Well said. Unlimited data customers also can not get tethering, and get throttled if they use too much data

    3. Ghodagadi says:

      But one might say you are being greedy too. You want to consume more bandwidth on your unlimited plan at the expense of consumers that are paying for more data. It cuts both way if you say AT&T is greedy then so are you.

  2. To me it sounds like I’ve upgraded both my tarrifs as a person in a tmobile shop said this is best tarrif I’m on which is the full monty plan and I’m paying the £36 a month yet seen the same plan advertised for only £26 so why is it I’ve been with tmobile for well over 10 years now and still have to pay more than new customers I text quit alot and use Internet every day for average of say 7 hours give or take and once face time both me or my wife be able to phone each other when at work to see our kids and for them to see us as at times we finish work or start work and kids still fast on

    1. Ben says:

      No, my iPhone 4s has that symbol. Only those with a iPhone 4s and at&t get that symbol. Pretty cool:)