iOS device users can now rejoice as the Big Red has confirmed that it will allow use of FaceTime app over its wireless data services. The carrier has said it will not be applying any sort of restrictions and this will apply to all existing data plans. AT&T, the other major wireless service provider in the U.S. announced last month that it would allow FaceTime over its network but applied conditions.
FaceTime, a name given by Apple to its video conference application, allows video communication between compatible iOS device such as the iPod touch, the iPhone, iPad and Mac computers. The app was first introduced back when Apple released the iPHone 4 but has always remained an application that works over Wi-Fi networks. This is about to change with the introduction of iOS 6. The new operating system will allow FaceTime to be used over cellular wireless networks for the first time.
The only problem has been the amount of data a video conferencing app consumes. This was also the main reason Apple had restricted FaceTime to Wi-Fi. Service providers are worried that allowing FaceTime to be used over cellular networks will bleed service providers. However, Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet rules term restricting service to individual apps as illegal.
AT&T, which already allows FaceTime over its network, does so only if the customers opts for the Family Share plans. Under this plan, all the data used by different devices tied to the plan are accounted under a single account. This again, has not been met positively by critics who term this as against the Open Internet rules.
Verizon has already been fined by FCC on similar accounts, when the carrier stop apps from using its network, which allowed Verizon phones to be used as local Wi-Fi hotspots. The carrier does not want to get into trouble with FCC this time over FaceTime and hence all existing data plans, even those using the unlimited data plans will be able to use FaceTime over Verizon networks.