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VoLTE Technology to be adopted by multiple network operators in 2016

  • Posted by Swapna Supekar
  • September 16, 2016 10:14 AM BST
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Good quality voice calls over Wi-Fi in areas prone to call drops and network issues to tackle the problem with the help of VoWi-Fi technology.

Communication technology has taken huge strides forward in the last two decades. Technology has also come a long way. Today, everybody can access the internet through their smartphones and tablets on the go. Internet calling and messaging has become simpler and cost-effective. Allied Market Research recently published a report titled, “Voice over LTE Market by Technology,” which gives useful insight about the market such as market share, size, and growth. Internet is the largest platform that connects people by texts, calls, emails, and others. It has simplified communication and is easily accessible. Multiple network operators worldwide are introducing new schemes and services with accord to the existing trends in the market. Vo-WiFi is a new technology being adopted and implemented by network operators. Smartphone makers are developing products that enable the use of VoWi-Fi technology.

VoWi-Fi Technology for indoor communication will improve call quality

Innovations in telecoms have forced renowned multinational companies such as Uber, Airbnb, Tesla, and others to shy away from traditional work models. Apps such as WhatsApp and WeChat have completely replaced the short message service (SMS) that was predominantly used before the internet wave captured the market. Customers who make internet calls indoors have complained about poor reception and call quality. This is an important factor that has urged network operators to look for alternative solutions.

VoWi-Fi has been tipped to change the face of voice calls in the future. According to Deloitte, around 100 carriers across the globe will provide packet based voice service such VoLTE and VoWi-Fi. The main challenge for these market players is to provide good quality service indoors. Ericsson’s consumer lab report suggests that indoor voice calls made were double than calls made outdoors. LTE signals are vulnerable to same limitations as 2G and 3G. Operators can deploy femtocells or install signal boosters to strengthen the signal quality. However, this is not feasible all the time and often becomes an expensive alternative.

Today, Wi-Fi is easily accessible almost everywhere. Easy access to the Wi-Fi routers along with fast internet speed has made Wi-Fi a de-facto standard for internet connectivity. Availability of Wi-Fi is growing steadily worldwide from 30% in 2011 to 61% in 2014. These figures depict that the Wi-Fi technology is here to stay and will not fade out anytime soon. This has encouraged operators to use VoWi-Fi to expand coverage especially indoors and in areas with poor network coverage.

VoLTE and VoWi-Fi will soon be introduced by multiple operators worldwide

VoLTE and VoWi-Fi have been tipped to make a huge impact in the telecommunication world. Easy Wi-Fi access coupled with fast internet speeds compliment the innovative VoWi-Fi technology. Several telecoms worldwide are planning to introduce VoWi-Fi services.

In July 2016, Vodafone launched a Wi-Fi Calling service based on the WIT VoWiFi solution. The service offered by Vodafone enables pre-paid and post-paid subscribers to make and receive voice calls on Wi-Fi via an app that can be downloaded on all android devices. The solution has allowed operators to provide reliable voice service to their customers who face the problem of poor coverage when they are underground in a basement or reinforced concrete structures. The launch is in sync with VoLTE launch is easily available in handsets that are compatible with the technology.

Similarly, Singtel announced plans to dish out a commercial Voice-over-Wi-Fi service in August 2016. The company said that the new service will be easily available at any Wi-Fi hotspot which includes homes and the company’s public access points. The service will simplify voice calling on Wi-Fi and ensure uninterrupted calls at areas prone to call drops and bad signal. Singtel’s Consumer CEO Yuen Kuan Mood said, “With pervasive connectivity and higher data capacity set to become the norm, it was important for us to conduct a hetnet trial to gain further insights. Given our positive trial results, we are ready to support the ‘internet of things’ with our networks and provide Singtel mobile users with high-quality voice calls and SMS island wide.”

The adoption rate of the technology is growing every year and the trend is most anticipated to continue as conditions favor the technology.

The telecom scenario in the Indian subcontinent to change with VoLTE

Key Indian market players such as Reliance and Idea Cellular are planning to adopt VoLTE tech on their networks with the assistance of Nokia. The move was aimed to improve the services already offered by the telecoms. One can make use of more bandwidth to make 4G calls, which maintains high quality audio both ways. The calls connect faster and one can easily understand the difference the VoLTE makes in these situations. VoLTE faces strong competition from voice over internet protocol (VoIP) and Over-The-Top) OTT.

There are many factors that supplement the growth of the VoLTE technology market such as improved spectral efficiency, faster call setup time, growing demand for mobile unified communications, and others. The end user’s demand for unified communications is high and thus enables market growth. VoLTE technology is 20 times faster than the 3G broadband available today and in a world where things need to be swift and on time, the technology is set to take over the telecom industry.

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