Ericsson has announced the addition of a new functionality, WiFi calling for multi-device, to the existing Ericsson WiFi calling solution.

This functionality enables operators to extend voice service coverage from smartphones to millions of WiFi-only devices such as tablets and personal computers, creating value for consumers worldwide and bringing operators new business opportunities.

With WiFi calling for multi-device, consumers can use devices that have only WiFi access capabilities to make regular voice calls over any WiFi network. The consumer’s personal devices can be located at different WiFi access points anywhere in the world, while their smartphone can be on cellular access or any WiFi access point, and consumers can choose to pick up calls on any of the devices.

Calls can therefore be made in locations with poor cellular coverage, such as inside residential buildings. In addition, consumers are no longer forced to rely on over-the-top voice services over WiFi access. Wi-Fi calling for multi-device is integrated natively in devices that support this functionality, meaning that consumers can enjoy an easy-to-use and intuitive service.

Anders Olin, head of product area network functions at Ericsson, says: “While natively integrated WiFi calling in smartphones has been commercially available for some time, both consumers and operators can benefit from extending this functionality to multiple devices. We are excited to launch WiFi calling for multi-device, which is a clear example of how Ericsson’s technology leadership is helping to create differentiated user experiences.”

Ericsson has added the new WiFi calling for multi-device functionality to the existing Ericsson WiFi calling solution. The Ericsson offering comprises product support in Evolved Packet Core (EPC), IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), User Data Management (UDM) and OSS/BSS, as well as system integration services. The functionality is verified and tested end-to-end towards device brands that support this service.

The Ericsson solution supports multiple options for call set-up use cases, such as simultaneous calls on several devices and transfer of ongoing calls between devices. These can be enabled on any device type in line with device ecosystem developments.

It is expected that the first operators will commercially launch WiFi calling for multi-device services during 2015. Ericsson supported the world’s first commercial Wi-Fi calling launch and has since supported numerous operators in launching native WiFi calling for smartphones.