If you have been an avid user of FaceTime, then you are surely aware of its one most glaring limitations. Currently, in order to use FaceTime, users will need to be on a Wi-Fi Network, which definitely severely limits the potential of this video conferencing service. But the upcoming iOS 5 looks to remedy this one glaring flaw, because it seems that the iOS 5 beta now supports FaceTime over a 3G network.
There is a reason why Apple decided to have FaceTime accessible through Wi-Fi only, instead of having additional 3G network support. It is because of the phone carriers. A full blown video chatting service is surely going to be extremely popular and at the same time it is definitely going to take a toll over their network especially on crowded cities. But it seems with iOS 5, FaceTime over 3G is now possible.
Here is a video from 9to5Mac that demonstrates FaceTime working on 3G network:
As of this writing, there still no word or confirmation from Apple yet whether this particular feature will remain by the time the iOS 5 is released. Or maybe it is enabled for testing purposes only or was activated by Apple by accident? Or maybe phone carriers finally gave the go sign to Apple? Well no one really knows, but we will surely hear more news about this iOS 5 (accidental?) feature.
A full blown video chat service, while indeed sounds to be an exciting feature, is most definitely going to take a hit in your monthly phone bills. With FaceTime video chat streaming, users will surely hit their monthly cap faster than ever. And as mentioned before, such service will surely cause chaotic network congestion especially in highly populated areas. Also you have to keep in mind, iOS 5 is still in beta so there's a huge possibility that Apple will remove FaceTime 3G support by the time of iOS 5's release.
iOS 5 has been previewed by Apple just this Monday at the WWDC 2011 and is expected to be released this coming fall.Contact Us for News Tips, Corrections and Feedback