Last updated: June 20, 2012 - 9:05am
Apple’s recent decision to bring its popular video-calling application FaceTime to cellular networks could give wireless carriers a boost as they look to find new ways to charge for data usage.
Data consumption from FaceTime could be significant for regular users and, depending on their plans, leave them needing a larger monthly data allotment. While that may tap the wallets of some users, the total increase of usage will continue the trend of data sales driving a bigger portion of wireless revenue at carriers. FaceTime uses a camera on the iPhone to connect with others on their phones, iPads or Mac computers. The application has been available for use only when both users are connected to Wi-Fi, but, with iOS 6—Apple's newest mobile operating system, coming this autumn—it can be used on cellular networks. According to one analyst's estimate, those on a data plan that offers a single gigabyte per month could use up the allotment by making just one five-minute call a day on FaceTime.
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