Cellular coverage in South Cowichan isn’t great. It’s better than it was about 5 years ago when several new towers went up, but there are still many areas with poor cellular reception. Many of us have to step outside for every call, and for some of us, dropped calls can mean lost business … which can result in lost revenue.
This is why, for many years, I have considered buying and installing a cellular repeater at home. I have installed them for others, and seen a great improvement in reception, but it’s the principle of spending money to fix a problem effectively caused by my cellular provider that put me off buying one for myself. Depending on the size of area you are trying to cover, a repeater can cost $600-$1200.
But now there’s a new solution that, for many of us, costs nothing. It’s called wifi calling.
All the local cellular providers appear to support this feature, but only for certain plans and certain smartphones. So if you already have the right service plan and the right phone, all you have to do is enable the feature with your provider, and on your phone. If you enable the service on an iPhone, it will use wifi calling whenever wifi is available. In Android, there is a setting to choose cellular or wifi for your preferred method when both are available at the same time. (Keep in mind, for those with a limited number of cellular minutes, your wifi calls still count against your cellular minutes.)
With this new feature, your phone can seamlessly switch from using the cellular network to using your closest wireless network. If you have fast and dependable wifi at home and at work, your days of bad cell reception are over! For some, this could be a big enough breakthrough to consider dropping your landline.