A WiFi® phone uses wireless Internet technology to make phone calls. There are designated areas in some cafes and public areas known as hotspots where people can use WiFi® devices, including phones. Providing there are no obstructions and depending on the amount of people using the hotspot, the phone can be used within 300 feet (about 90 meters) of hotspot area so as long as the user is within range of a hotspot, her office can be where ever she is.
A phone that works on WiFi® typically has all the same features as a regular phone. With normal cell phones, users can make calls, send text message, receive voicemail and, with limitations, access the Internet. The phone has greater data retrieval capabilities and wider Internet access. The WiFi® technology can also be found in laptops, and there is no need for telephone lines to connect to the Internet.
WiFi® phone technology is still relatively new and may take a while to become widely accepted. It has been available in hospitals and offices for years, but consumer options have been limited. Some experts predict that the number of access points and hotspots will increase over the coming years, and as the benefits of using a phone over WiFi® become more apparent, many people are expected to make the change from more traditional phones.
There are still a few teething problems to be found with WiFi® phone technology. Users cannot roam between hotspots with the phone and still receive WiFi® calls, although they will still be able to make and receive normal cellular calls. A lot of phones will shut off the WiFi® connection when not in use to conserve energy, missing incoming calls. As the speed of technological developments is so fast, these problems may be solved quickly.
As hotspots are often free to use, the cost benefits of the WiFi® phone can be huge. WiFi® is seen as the way forward for the business community by many people, and it also looks likely to revolutionize the way people pay for and use their phones in the future.