T-Mobile’s COO, Mike Sievert, has unwrapped news about a new feature that’s launching for T-Mobile customers. In an industry first, the company announced a new technology for juggling multiple phone numbers across different devices, regardless of which service provider those numbers are on. You’ll be able to manage up to 10 numbers on one device or a single number across multiple devices.
T-Mobile says you’ll be able to access your phone number from any device including PCs, wearables, smartphones, tablets, or even feature phone. You’ll be able to see your call history, phone calls, and text messages from any of these devices.
The company says this will eliminate the need for a second device, just to carry another phone number for work. This costs US wireless customers up to $10 billion per year if you include the additional lines and additional payments for an additional device.
As for what else you can do with DIGITS, if you don’t want to give your real number to someone, you can give them a DIGITS number instead. Businesses would be able to move to DIGITS, completely eliminating the need to get employees a second device (depending on the business’ needs) since the service can work with any number on any carrier.
T-Mobile is working with phone makers so that DIGITS can work natively on T-Mobile branded phones. For those phones that aren’t T-Mobile branded, customers can download the DIGITS app for iOS or Android to manage their numbers, messages, and calls. PCs and Mac can access DIGITS via browser. Apparently, DIGITS is already enabled in T-Mobile branded Galaxy Note5, S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+, S7, and S7 edge.
”Instead of authenticating devices through SIM cards, DIGITS gives customers their own identity. When someone calls you, they reach you regardless of the device you have in your hand.
The video above mentioned the use of flip phones and a smart watch, however it's not clear if T-Mobile will be connecting these devices for you as part of DIGITS or if additional devices' connections would be on your own dime.
A beta of the service is now open to all T-Mobile customers, though you’ll need to register and wait for an approval email. This will help T-Mobile iron out the kinks before its official launch early next year.
Google FI does this and more.
I don't see how this is different from what Rogers had until now, Rogers One Number (which was just discontinued), with the only difference that it required a smartphone to install the app (so flip phones didn't work).
T-Mobile will be the first carrier supporting Apple's universal-SIM future.