Apple has begun seeding the second developer beta of iOS 9.2, adding support for AT&T's NumberSync, a feature that lets users make and take Wi-Fi phone calls on their iDevices without having to connect them with an iPhone.
Apple users already have the advantage of using Wi-Fi calling on their Mac, iPad or iPod touch with a feature called Continuity, which passes on whatever is taking place on an iPhone to another iDevice. However, for users to be able to make Wi-Fi calls on their devices, they need to have these devices connected to the same network the iPhone is on.
With the new beta, Apple is enabling Wi-Fi calling on people's devices using the same AT&T phone number used for the iPhone, but without requiring the device and the iPhone to be connected to each other through the same Wi-Fi network. It's an extremely useful feature for situations such as when the iPhone's battery runs out or if the user forgets their iPhone at home. They can still call people using their phone numbers through other devices, such as their Mac.
To do this, users need to go through a few steps and turn on NumberSync for both their iPhone and their Mac. Once they have downloaded and installed the second iOS 9.2 beta, users need to open the Settings app, go to Phone > Wi-Fi Calling and tap Add Wi-Fi Calling For Other Devices. The feature's terms of service will appear, and users should thoroughly go through it before tapping the Accept button. Once done, all the user's devices connected to their iCloud account will have Wi-Fi calling with NumberSync turned on.
However, they still need to accomplish a few tasks on the Mac to be fully able to make calls on OS X. Once the feature is enabled on the iPhone, a FaceTime notification banner will appear on the Mac, asking users if they want to upgrade to Wi-Fi calling. If, for any reason, the notification doesn't show up, users can manually turn on the feature by going to FaceTime Preferences and clicking Upgrade to Wi-Fi Calling.
Users will then be asked to verify their preferences using a code that needs to be entered on their iPhone. Afterwards, users will also have to verify their emergency location, which is what a 911 dispatcher sees when they call in case of an emergency.
Once done, Wi-Fi calling with NumberSync is now enabled on the Mac. Users can then make and receive phone calls on their computer without the person on the other line knowing they are not using a phone. To turn off this feature, users simply need to open the Settings app on their iPhone, go to Phone > Calls on Other Devices, and toggle the feature off.
Photo: Omar Jordah Fawahl | Flickr