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I have had a further conversation with a specialist O2 customer support team. They were very patient in listening, have replicated the issue on some Pixel 3 handsets in their possession (it replicated on some, not on others), and have now raised the issue direct with the manufacturer. It is unclear at this stage whether it is a manfacturer issue or an O2 network issue.
The best news though is that they assured me that the Pixel 3 does NOT need O2 firmware in order for WiFi and 4G calling to work - it should just work. The advice from O2 customer support suggesting that was a requirement is 'old' advice.
The key requirements they suggested were necessary to get WiFi calling activated are (consumer tariffs only - business tariffs are a different kettle of fish):
1. Make sure Pixel 3/3XL is updated with the latest software, and as a minimum with the Feb 2019 security update. The March 2019 security update was released yesterday.
2. Make sure WiFi and 4G calling are activated on your O2 account.
3. If you were on an iPhone tariff and have just switched to Android, make sure you request that your data tariff is switched from iPhone to Smartphone. You can get this done via O2 customer services. The switch takes up to 24 hours to activate.
4. Make sure there aren't any conflicting services on your tariff (e.g. bespoke APN, VPN, Just Call Me, Mobex - these are usually only available on business tariffs and don't apply to consumer tariffs).
5. Once all the above are confirmed make sure the phone has been restarted.
As in my case the service may still not activate even if you do all of the above. I am confident they will get back once they are clear about what is causing the issue on select handsets.
@mas Thank you for your posts. I moved from an iphone to a pixel 3 through the carphone warehouse, although still on O2 (as I have been for 15 years). I don't even have the wifi calling option as a toggle!
After 3 x different "guru" online chats and 2 x calls to the O2 contact number I am still no clearer as to whether I will ever get wifi calling! I have been told O2 don't support the Pixel 3 at all for wifi calling, that it won't work because I purchased it from CPW, that I need to add the wifi & 4G options on my account (which online it says I have) and then I was told they were going to refresh my request?! Amongst a whole host of other reasons why it won't work. But when I type in the test mode on your post it's there and works! Although my IM is also unregistered.
I really am at the end of my tether and it's only been 24 hours!! Should I stick with it - will I get wifi calling in the end?? Or shall I run back and hide behind the Apple once more?!
@ZRB Sorry to hear you are having similar problems. Your experience sounds very familiar. I am confident I have (most recently) been liaising with the right people in O2. If they can't sort the problem I don't think there is anyone else who could.
Personally I love the Pixel 3, having also switched from iPhones (since iPhone 3GS). WiFi calling not working as it should is the only downside given the patchy O2 signal where I live.
If you are happy with the switch I would suggest holding on for a week or two to see how O2 get in with resolving the issue. As previously mentioned they know what the issue is, have replicated the problem, and are working on a fix.
I will update as and when I hear anything further.
Well if O2 don't enable WiFi calling for my Pixel 2 then it's off to EE for me once my contract is up.
O2 do not have any plans for wifi calling on the Pixel 2.
Insufficient demand apparently.
OnePlus and Sony already do this, and we’re already working with others to do the same. We’ve no further info or dates to share other than a ‘watch this space’.
Bit of an update to share on 'wifi preferred' for wifi calling... An update has been approved that'll enable this on the Samsung S9 which we expect to be live soon - within next week or so, we hope. There'll also be an update that'll bring wifi preferred to the Samsung S10 which we currently expect at the end of April, but i'll confirm closer to the time.