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Thread: merging calls

  1. #1
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    merging calls

    hello hofo folks, this is my first post here. i was directed here from some posters on the sprintusers.com forum. i am currently a sprint subscriber but strongly considering switching to att. i know that with an iphone the user has the ability to merge several callers into the confrence with just a tap of a button. do
    android phones on att have that same feature or is it just the iphone? thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Williams View Post
    hello hofo folks, this is my first post here. i was directed here from some posters on the sprintusers.com forum. i am currently a sprint subscriber but strongly considering switching to att. i know that with an iphone the user has the ability to merge several callers into the confrence with just a tap of a button. do
    android phones on att have that same feature or is it just the iphone? thanks.
    Everything you speak of is carrier dependent. Not phone specific. VZW, for instance, does not support "conference calling" at all. Instead, they have what they call 3-way calling. That's not the same as conference calling. It doesn't matter what phone you have. Whatever phone is sold to you by your carrier will support whatever calling features that carrier has.

    -Frank
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    It's not your dream phone. It's the one after that!©
    Look here for a [VZW Coverage Map] to check your area. Select 4G before hitting [Refresh Map]

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    I haven't tried this, but I know that Sprint supports 3-way calling, because it's listed as one of the "features" on my bill. According to their online instructions, you're supposed to call the first person, put him on hold, then call the second person, and the from the phone "keyboard," there should be a button for "conference."

    IIRC, when I was with AT&T, conference calling was also listed as a feature on my non-smartphone, so there should be no reason why an Android phone with AT&T can't do the same.



    Sent via the HowardForums Android app

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    Can we get some clarifications on definitions?

    To the OP: can you elaborate what you need so you'll know if there is any difference?

    To Frank: can you explain the difference so that we all know? Is the difference enough to sway one's choice? You did explain that if he goes to AT&T, all AT&T phones provide whichever version AT&T supports. And since Glenn says conference calling is supported by AT&T, then the phone is irrelevant if "conference" is what the OP wants.

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    There are a few definitions of "conference call"
    It usually means more-than-2-way calling.
    3-way calling (ATT and VZW) is a conference with 3 parties, and to confuse the issue, sometimes they use "conference call" to specify more-than-3-way, but sometimes they mean more-than-2.
    It could also mean several people huddled around a speaker phone.

    Whatever phone is sold to you by your carrier will support whatever calling features that carrier has
    .
    Not exactly. The capability of your phone is a separate issue from what is included/allowed by your calling plan. For example map/location services that require a subscription in addition to GPS on the phone.
    In 2005 they (then Cingular) sold me a Nokia 6230, which supports 5-way calling, and the Nationwide 450 plan that only allows 3-way. If there was an option to enable 4+ (I can't remember), it was an an extra fee.

    I couldn't find anything in OLAM to enable 4+ conferencing today, it might be available for business plans.

    I still have an 8 year old dumbphone that supports 3-way calling, so it's a safe bet anything on the market now can too.

    For the OP: If you want 3-way calling, no worries. If you want 4+ calling, you should contact AT&T for specifics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steveanderson13 View Post
    Can we get some clarifications on definitions?

    To the OP: can you elaborate what you need so you'll know if there is any difference?

    To Frank: can you explain the difference so that we all know? Is the difference enough to sway one's choice? You did explain that if he goes to AT&T, all AT&T phones provide whichever version AT&T supports. And since Glenn says conference calling is supported by AT&T, then the phone is irrelevant if "conference" is what the OP wants.
    Most people and most carriers misuse the phrase "conference calling" anyway, so technical differentiation between "3-way" and "conference" doesn't really matter much. The only important thing is that you understand what your carrier means. Carriers often also misuse the term. At least, their "reps" do. They are usually very careful not to use the wrong term in legally binding documents, however.

    Bottom line... true "conference calling" normally means that you can set up a "call-in number", people (almost any amount of people) will call that number (usually at a specified meeting time) and be connected to the "conference", just as if they were sitting around a table together.

    What VZW supports is NOT that. And, AFAIK, no wireless carriers support that. At least not on their standard consumer plans. Instead, they choose to call it "3-way calling". What that means is that the ORIGINATOR of the call calls each person (up to a max of two) and connects himself with the other two (hence, 3-way calling). Technically, this is NOT conference calling. You WILL see people calling it conference calling, but you'll notice the carriers are careful to make the distinction in your plan documents (i.e. calling it 3-way calling).

    And, yes, whatever handset you are using, if it came from the carrier you are using, will support the their method of "3-way" calling. Usually this is free. But who knows, maybe some of the "brand-x" companies might charge extra for it. I don't know.

    -Frank
    Last edited by Frank S; 02-14-2011 at 12:02 PM.

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    AT&T's website is very sparse on the details, saying only that "Conference Calling" is part of your plan's features.


    And as Frank stated, it's exactly like what the other carriers are doing--You call someone, put them on hold, call someone else, and merge the calls. Only thing we don't know from that page is how many calls can be merged.

    I've called into actual conference calls like Frank mentioned above, which was setup through AT&T; I'm sure the setup has nothing to do with cell phones, and probably has an extra cost associated to it. I would think other national phone companies have the same service, as well.




    Sprint's wireless plans, as I've mentioned, includes three-way calling. They give you a lot more detail than AT&T.





    T-Mobile calls it conference calling, but the details suggest it's the same as Sprint's three-way calling.





    I couldn't find reference to it on Verizon Wireless' website, which is rather odd.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GlennW View Post
    I couldn't find reference to it on Verizon Wireless' website, which is rather odd.
    [HERE] is the VZW info page from their FAQ.

    -Frank

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    Froyo has this feature. While on a call press "add call" and call the next person, once the 2nd person answers, "add call" button changes to "merge calls", press it and now you're in 3-way call.

    Sent from my Nexus One
    ...always an android guy

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    I think what your trying to say is if you are on a phone call and you get another call and you answer that as well then yes, your minutes will be charged double. I hope I understood your question correctly.

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    Conference Calling is generally used when you're on the phone with Caller-A and receive a new call from Caller-B, and you then join Caller-B into the conversation with Caller-A.

    3-Way calling allows you to call Caller-A and then call Caller-B and merge them two calls.

    Either way, air time is generally used independently per call, so if you're on with Caller-A for 5 minutes, then add in Caller-B for 5 minutes, you should be charged for 10 minutes with Caller-A, and 5 minutes with Caller-B, not just a flat 15 minutes.

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