Switching between Wi-Fi calling, Wi-Fi texting and cellular service on Project Fi is a subtle treat

Switching between Wi-Fi calling, Wi-Fi texting and cellular service on Project Fi is a subtle treat
Subscribers to the Google MVNO Project Fi can use a Wi-Fi or cellular connection for talk, text and data. The carriers used by the mobile virtual network are Sprint and T-Mobile, and Project Fi customers are required (for now) to use the Nexus 6. If you already own the stock Android phablet, inserting the nano SIM card provided by Google will allow you to BYOD to Project Fi.

One of the great features of the Nexus 6 on Project Fi is the phone's ability to determine which of the two carriers has the better signal at any given moment. Once that is determined, the phone quickly connects to that signal. The entire process is done quietly and the phone's owner isn't even aware of the change. In fact, the front status bar will always display "Project Fi" no matter which of the two carriers you are hooked up to at any given moment. Even more impressive is the lack of any change in the user experience that would signal that a switch has taken place.

If you happen to be rockin' a Wi-Fi connection that is fast enough for you to employ Wi-Fi calling on your Nexus 6, and suddenly you are dropped back to a cellular connection, the transition will happen so smoothly that you won't even know that it happened. And with Wi-Fi calling and Wi-Fi texting, calls and messages can be sent and received even when the phone is outside of a cellular network. The Wi-Fi networks used by a Project Fi phone must be completely open with no "click to connect" splash page getting in the way.

The bottom line is that by allowing customers to switch between Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity, Project Fi can offer a low price of $20 a month for unlimited talk and text, with data priced at $10 for each GB of data. The only way to become a Project Fi subscriber is via an invitation. Google says that everyone who wants an invite will have received one by the middle of the summer.


source: AndroidCentral

Related phones

Nexus 6
  • Display 6.0" 1440 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 805, Quad-core, 2700 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB
  • Battery 3220 mAh(24h talk time)

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11 Comments

1. waddup121 unregistered

nice stuff

3. QWERTYphone

Posts: 654; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

Can anyone report on their real world experience with Fi's network and their location? Thank you.

2. Scott93274

Posts: 6025; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

I'm sure that the Nexus 6 is a nice phone, but I hope that they open up the service to more than just the one device. The more successful this service is, the more it will open up. Imagine if AT&T and Verizon participated, to recapture lost capital from mass migration towards a less expensive and more intuitive service. Some day maybe...

4. jhlundin

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 11, 2015

...been on Fi for a month on scenic Hilton Head Island, SC... first month was less than half of my old ATT bill... phone and data have been flawless, only problem was with "short codes" getting SMS to 'hangouts' (needed them for one very secure confirmation)... but just went back to 'messages'... I am one happy camper!! J

5. QWERTYphone

Posts: 654; Member since: Sep 22, 2014

Thanks for posting! :) I'd love to hear reports from ALL the Fi users on here. I finally got my Fi invite, but I don't want a 6" phone, and I'm concerned about the network/service.

6. Scott93274

Posts: 6025; Member since: Aug 06, 2013

It's a concern everyone has, but you can check area coverage for both T mobile and Sprint online, and if you have wi-fi then you never need to worry about signal at your home. As for the phone, I think I would be very happy with the Nexus 6, but I'm in the market for a new phone.... and I want a NEW phone.

9. jhlundin

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 11, 2015

If you are believing those coverage maps, I have some island property I want to sell you... depending on how active the crowd sourcing of data is for your community, RootMetrix and Sensorly have active pockets of users that fill in the *real* coverage maps... Here on Hilton Head ATT has no coverage at the regional medical center... NONE! Some of us local citizens are working to find a site and present it to the tower companies...

8. jhlundin

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 11, 2015

I went from a 4.7" HTC One (M7) to the 6" Nexus 6... and it *is* a monster, but I am OK with it. I am actually keeping my M7 so if Google ever OK's some of the older phones to work with their new SIMs, I may go back and try the M7 for a while. I actually had my *first* dropped call this afternoon!... but I am not sure if it was my issue (my brother plays with T-mobile's WiFi calls and I have always had problems keeping connections with the TMob WiFi (dating back to ATT phones)). I am kinda surprised that Fi has not been agressive with the codecs they use. I would have gone with a wideband codec to give my early customers a better voice quality experience. We will see!! J

10. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Just as an FYI, any voip, including simple calls, is recommended to be 2Mb/s up/down network. If not, you will notice call degrading. However, from initial internal talks, Fi has been good, mimicking what our carrier is already doing, minus the sprint portion.

11. DrumX

Posts: 1; Member since: Jul 13, 2015

Just as an FYI, any voip, including simple calls, is using codec G711 or Codec G729/Custom Codecs which use around 4-7Kilobytes a second or around 32-56 kilobits(kbps)(or 4kB-7kB) per second.G711 uses 10KB(KiloByte)per second up and down, HOWEVER, i have seen the codec uses different encoding and get down to 2 KB (KiloByte) per second. thats 16 kilobits per second(16 kbps) . having something like a 2 Mb/s (Megabit per second) is like making 125 calls at 2KB/s(Kilobyte) or at 7KB/s KiloByte(Best sound) you can make 35 calls comfortably, check your math or codecs..have a nice day!

7. Kaiser2007

Posts: 173; Member since: Nov 16, 2013

I wish they offer data only service.

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