iOS 8: A Take Control Crash Course
by Josh Centers

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Table of Contents

Phoning It In

Whether you have an iPhone or not, this chapter will tell you how to make a “phone” call on your device.

On an iPhone, the phone functions are tucked away in the Phone app, making the functionality that they offer unobtrusive in light of all the other apps and whiz-bang features. But there’s more than one way to talk with someone in iOS: FaceTime lets you make crystal-clear audio or video calls on any iOS 8 device . And iOS 8 adds new capabilities to Phone and FaceTime.

① 	An iPhone can make conventional phone calls, but iOS has more to offer, even on devices that aren’t phones. FaceTime provides video and crystal-clear audio calling on iOS devices, even without cellular service.

① An iPhone can make conventional phone calls, but iOS has more to offer, even on devices that aren’t phones. FaceTime provides video and crystal-clear audio calling on iOS devices, even without cellular service.

New! Phone Call Relaying

Your Yosemite Mac or iOS 8 iPad or iPod touch can use your iPhone to make and receive phone calls, even when the iPhone is across the room. To learn more, check out Share iPhone Calls and Texts across Devices, in Joe Kissell’s Digital Sharing for Apple Users: A Take Control Crash Course.

Making a Phone Call

Favoriting Contacts

To add a contact to the Favorites view in Phone, view that person’s contact card (in, for example, the Contacts app) and tap Add to Favorites. You’re prompted to choose the contact method you prefer: phone call, FaceTime, or FaceTime Audio (you see only those options that are available for that contact).

For example, I added my wife’s FaceTime Audio contact to my Favorites, so I can quickly call her via FaceTime from the Favorites view in Phone.

Favorites can also break through the Do Not Disturb cone of silence (if you turn that option on—tap Settings > Do Not Disturb and then tap Allow Calls From and pick Favorites.)

Talking on the Phone

② 	During a phone call, tap Speaker to put the call into speakerphone mode. Remember that the best microphones for this mode are near the front camera and on the bottom edge.

② During a phone call, tap Speaker to put the call into speakerphone mode. Remember that the best microphones for this mode are near the front camera and on the bottom edge.

Dealing with Incoming Calls

③ 	When the phone is ringing, you can slide to answer, respond with a canned text message, or set a reminder to call the party back.

③ When the phone is ringing, you can slide to answer, respond with a canned text message, or set a reminder to call the party back.

Checking Voicemail

To listen to your voicemail messages, select the Voicemail view in Phone. Tap a message, and if playback doesn’t begin automatically, tap the triangular Play button . You can also tap the Speaker button to hear the message without holding the iPhone up to your ear. Tap Call Back to call that person back, or Delete to get rid of the message.

④ 	Playback should begin automatically. You can stop playback by tapping the Pause button. When playback is paused, the Pause button becomes a Play button.

④ Playback should begin automatically. You can stop playback by tapping the Pause button. When playback is paused, the Pause button becomes a Play button.

Tip: In this modern world, it’s always good etiquette to message someone before calling, especially for a video call.

About the FaceTime App

FaceTime allows you to place an Internet-based video or audio call to anyone running at least iOS 7 or 10.9 Mavericks (FaceTime video is supported as far back as iOS 4 and 10.7 Lion).

On the iPhone, you can initiate a FaceTime call from the Phone app using any technique besides dialing on the Keypad, just by tapping the appropriate video or audio icon , or you can call from within the FaceTime app.

⑤ 	To initiate a FaceTime video or audio call from, for example, a contact card in the Phone app, tap the appropriate FaceTime icon.

⑤ To initiate a FaceTime video or audio call from, for example, a contact card in the Phone app, tap the appropriate FaceTime icon.

On the iPad and iPod touch, there is no Phone app, so you use the FaceTime app for these calls.

Tip: In iOS 8, your most recent contacts are listed in the App Switcher, and you can contact them from there. Double-press the Home button to view the App Switcher.

New! Calling with Wi-Fi

In the Phone app, you can make traditional phone calls over Wi-Fi instead of the cellular network using an iPhone 5s, 5c, 6, or 6 Plus. The good news is that Wi-Fi calls tend to be much clearer and more reliable than cellular calls. The bad news is that this feature is not yet supported by all carriers. In the United States, only T-Mobile currently supports Wi-Fi calling; AT&T promises to support it sometime in 2015.

If your carrier supports Wi-Fi calling, here’s how to activate it:

  1. Visit Settings > Phone > Wi-Fi Calling.
  2. Turn on Wi-Fi Calling.

If your carrier does not have an emergency address registered with you, you may be asked to enter that as you enable Wi-Fi Calling.

Using FaceTime

If you haven’t already, go to Settings > FaceTime and sign in.

  1. Open the FaceTime app, and at the top of the screen tap either Video or Audio .
    ⑥ 	In the FaceTime app, you can place a video or audio call to a contact with a FaceTime-compatible device.

    ⑥ In the FaceTime app, you can place a video or audio call to a contact with a FaceTime-compatible device.

  2. In the text field below, search for a contact. Or tap the plus + button in the upper right to choose a contact. Or tap a recent contact.

    FaceTime tries to initiate the call. If all goes well, the recipient taps the green Accept button and the call begins.

  3. To end the call, tap the red End Call button.
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“Too busy to talk? On the iPhone, press the Sleep/Wake button once to silence a ringing call, twice to decline it.”

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