After announcing the XLTE network, Verizon has announced plans for nationwide launch of VoLTE this year and will be offering a “robust” line of VoLTE-based smartphones and video calling services.
A Verizon spokeswoman has said that it will be coming in the next few months and will be a national rollout with a “tangible amount of handsets. The company did not mention the launch date and the models of smartphones. However the company mentioned that the service will be available “later this year”.
Brian Higgins, VP of mobile and internet services for Verizon’s product group said in a statement:
“We believe that the combination of this robust network along with new features is going to create a new, meaningful experience for our customers for their calling needs.”
Higgins stated that the VoLTE HD-voice service will be supported by ARM Wideband standard which allows direct video calls from contact lists and also a feature to switch from voice-call to video-call. According to Verizon, future enhancements will be provided by Rich Communications Services (RCS) which will provide group messaging, large file sharing and location sharing.
VoLTE technology is set to bring a major change in voice calls over wireless network as the conversations would utilize LTE technology instead of circuit-switched connections.
Last week, Verizon’s competitor AT&T had announced that it would launch VoLTE services in Illinois, Minnesota, Indiana and Wisconsin and is set to expand into many markets in the future. AT&T mentioned that it would provide HD-voice calling but did not comment on video calling. Higgins also added that the carrier will provide details regarding the LTE Broadcast technology launch named as LTE Multicast and re framing of CDMA spectrum for LTE to free up space on its existing CDMA network.
Prior to the VoLTE announcement, Verizon has also announced the rumored XLTE network. In Verizon’s words – While XLTE network enhancements are invisible to the customer, the mobile experience is not. XLTE Ready devices automatically access both 700 MHz spectrum and the AWS spectrum in XLTE cities.
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