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Thread: No WIFI Calling on Straight Talk Verizon Even with CDMA's Demise on the Horizon

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    No WIFI Calling on Straight Talk Verizon Even with CDMA's Demise on the Horizon

    Verizon will drop CDMA in January.

    Straight Talk bludgeoned me to death with texts earlier this year warning me that my phone (a Verizon S4) would not work anymore once CDMA was dropped at year's end, and that I needed a new phone that supported VoLTE. So I bought an S9-plus (also Verizon) and activated it on ST. The phone is great, but I was shocked to find out that Wifi Calling is not available even though the phone is capable of it.

    I live in an area with a very weak signal from any carrier. I can sometimes get Verizon LTE there but it's very erratic and unreliable, even with a booster. So VoLTE won't be much good to me there. I had counted on the fact that I could use WIFI calling when home, but as of yet it is still not available through ST on Verizon. The option to turn it on doesn't even exist in my settings. I ran the ST test to see if my SIM was compatible and it came back negative. So I called ST (as suggested), and was told that Wifi Calling would only work on TMobile or AT&T through ST. Well, I don't want to switch because I often travel and the coverage is much better on Verizon. So I'm stuck.

    I would just switch to Verizon and bypass ST altogether if I could, but unfortunately I had just re-upped my ST service for another year before discovering all of this.

    I don't know how Verizon can drop CDMA and then expect everyone to use VoLTE when LTE isn't available everywhere. If they would allow MVNOs to use WIFI calling, that would at least help the situation, and for me it would help greatly. But that hasn't happened yet, at least not through ST. GRRRRRRR.....

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    No WIFI Calling on Straight Talk Verizon Even with CDMA's Demise on the Horizon

    WiFi calling is not needed for VoLTE to work.

    It’s by January 2021 not January 2020 when it’s being shutdown... it will still work at least until December 2020 before CDMA is shutdown


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    Quote Originally Posted by hyelton View Post
    WiFi calling is not needed for VoLTE to work.

    It’s by January 2021 not January 2020 when it’s being shutdown... it will still work at least until December 2020 before CDMA is shutdown


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    Ok so that's changed. I just found something on ST saying the elimination of CDMA will be delayed to "summer 2020" but nothing beyond that. Do you have a link?

    Yes, I know WIFI calling doesn't need VoLTE to work, but presumably VoLTE does require an LTE signal. Lacking that, I could at least use WIFI calling to make and receive phone calls at home without LTE access. But if the CDMA shutdown deadline is indeed the end of next year, it's a non issue for me. I'll just switch over to Verizon after my service plan runs out if WIFI calling still won't work on ST by then.

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    Quote Originally Posted by simplygib View Post
    Ok so that's changed. I just found something on ST saying the elimination of CDMA will be delayed to "summer 2020" but nothing beyond that. Do you have a link?

    Yes, I know WIFI calling doesn't need VoLTE to work, but presumably VoLTE does require an LTE signal. Lacking that, I could at least use WIFI calling to make and receive phone calls at home without LTE access. But if the CDMA shutdown deadline is indeed the end of next year, it's a non issue for me. I'll just switch over to Verizon after my service plan runs out if WIFI calling still won't work on ST by then.
    It’s on Verizon’s website. https://www.verizonwireless.com/supp...e-base-218813/

    January 2020 is when cdma devices can no longer be activated but shutdown won’t be until late in the year.


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    Thanks hyelton. This is good news for me. I don't know whether ST just misinterpreted this or if the deadline changed at some point, but either way, I'm glad to hear it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hyelton View Post
    It’s on Verizon’s website. https://www.verizonwireless.com/supp...e-base-218813/

    January 2020 is when cdma devices can no longer be activated but shutdown won’t be until late in the year.
    I don't think non-VoLTE devices have been able to be activated on the Vzw network for quite a while now.

    I think Vzw stopped activating non-VoLTE devices in July, 2018, and Vzw MVNOs stopped activating them in April, 2019.

    Where did you get "January 2020 is when cdma devices can no longer be activated"? I haven't seen that before.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    I don't think non-VoLTE devices have been able to be activated on the Vzw network for quite a while now.

    I think Vzw stopped activating non-VoLTE devices in July, 2018, and Vzw MVNOs stopped activating them in April, 2019.

    Where did you get "January 2020 is when cdma devices can no longer be activated"? I haven't seen that before.
    That Verizon link


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    Quote Originally Posted by hyelton View Post
    That Verizon link
    Wow! Vzw REALLY made some big changes vs what they originally announced and in fact what was already happening.

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    Do you need the unlimited data element of straight talk? If not you may want to see if their sister brand Total Wireless (also Verizon network) offers WiFi calling. I've read that they may but I don't know if that's been confirmed.

    I'm using another non-Tracfone companies Verizon MVNO right now and I don't have this feature either.

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    You were right Boz. No "new" account "activation" was back in the time frame you mentioned. What that Verizon link summary is saying is that you can't "change" those currently active non-HD phones etc., which are on an "existing" active account. So if your phone breaks and you want to move your account to another like phone you're out of luck.

    Also to all, keep in mind that the CDMA will be slowly shut down through the next year. It won't be like throwing a switch at the end of the year. Some areas, like mine, have already seen a cut backs. You may wake up some morning in 2020 and no longer have cdma. That's one reason the MVNOs are pushing the sooner then later. Avoid all the no service complaints over the next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luckystreich View Post
    If not you may want to see if their sister brand Total Wireless (also Verizon network) offers WiFi calling. I've read that they may but I don't know if that's been confirmed.
    Total Wireless doesn't have WiFi calling either, no matter what they say. Not on iPhone Max Pro, not on Samsung S10, not on Moto G7...
    They do however have VoLTE with HD+ Voice.


    Quote Originally Posted by simplygib View Post
    I don't know how Verizon can drop CDMA and then expect everyone to use VoLTE when LTE isn't available everywhere. If they would allow MVNOs to use WIFI calling, that would at least help the situation, and for me it would help greatly. But that hasn't happened yet, at least not through ST. GRRRRRRR.....
    How is related the CDMA demise related to the necessity of WiFi calling? You didn't have that option before, on CDMA, either.

    WiFi calling is an obsession for T-Mobile people that frequently get out of coverage indoors. Not a real issue for Verizon that has the main band in 700MHz range (B13) and penetrates indoors (residential) well.

    IMO the LTE signal just got better and better lately, many CDMA sites around my area got converted to B5 LTE (850MHz), while the CDMA equipment is not being actively maintained. At this time I don't thinks that there is a cell left with CDMA-only.

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    There are areas where CDMA still works for voice where LTE doesn't. Ever smaller areas.
    iPhone X is my current primary phone. I have older model iPhones and Moto phones available on other lines. Currently prepaid, though would consider postpaid on right plan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kevink1 View Post
    There are areas where CDMA still works for voice where LTE doesn't. Ever smaller areas.

    Is this anecdotal? Urban legend? Because I didn't encounter such area in the last two years.

    PS: Using something like cellmapper, it's not helpful since it has older information stored in from several years, in places less traveled. Unless you see that the data is at most one year old, it can be inaccurate today (in respect to CDMA). For example, in my area, all the sites that were LTE band 4 last year now they are marked as LTE band 66 (probably via the MBFI multi band frequency indicator).
    This is because I have started re-mapping them with my S10 that has that capability.

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    There is a fairly lengthy thread in the Verizon forum about cdma v lte coverage that touches on a lot of issues involved bottom line being cdma is on its way out.

    https://www.howardforums.com/showthr...red-with-CDMA)

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoNic67 View Post
    Is this anecdotal? Urban legend? Because I didn't encounter such area in the last two years.
    Well, I've seen my phone drop from LTE on the network to CDMA in the recent past. Including in a very small town in Nebraska last spring. (For that matter, ATT Prepaid had no coverage at all there).

    It could just be distance from a tower, frequency bands used by the different technologies, maybe roaming partners that don't have LTE.

    I don't know that Verizon has any towers of their own that only have CDMA. Probably not unless it is a tower to be decommissioned.

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