AT&T today provided a new statement regarding the use of pre-installed apps and third-party apps to conduct video chats.
The statement serves to update its position after it was discovered last week that the new Google Hangouts application cannot conduct two-way video chats over AT&T’s cellular network. “For video chat apps that come pre-loaded on devices,” explained AT&T, “we currently give all OS and device makers the ability for those apps to work over cellular for our customers who are on Mobile Share or Tiered plans. Apple, Samsung and Blackberry have chosen to enable this for their pre-loaded video chat apps.”
This includes FaceTime, ChatOn, and BlackBerry Messenger. Google Hangouts, which replaces Google Talk, technically qualifies as a pre-loaded app and Google has not sought to enable Hangouts over cellular with AT&T.
“Throughout the second half of this year,” continued AT&T, “we plan to enable pre-loaded video chat apps over cellular for all our customers, regardless of data plan or device; that work is expected to be complete by yearend.”
Customers are still able to download third-party apps such as Skype, Viber, Kik, and others, to conduct video chats over cellular.