There are a lot of virtual copies and URLs of a September 16 New York Times story discussing Orange’s launch of mobile HD voice service.
Moldova was chosen because it has France Telecom’s latest 3G network. Industry experts are “divided” if HD voice will become the “edge” that operators are expecting to offset the steady decline voice calls. Gartner is predicting that half of all consumers will be on IP based networks in 10 years while Daniel Berninger is quoted as saying “It’s all over and done with” in five years — but we’d expect Dan to say that.
Major U.S. carriers are cited as experimenting with the technology and France Telecom is credited as the first to bring HD to market, with the expectation that the company will offer it to all 13.4 million of its European cusotmers by 2015. Availability of HD on other FT wireless networks will be expanded over the next 5 years as the carrier upgrades its wireless networks.
Cost for the Nokia 6720C handset is 4,299 Moldovan lei or $385 U.S. and Orange Moldova’s chief exec expects more cell phones to come onto the market by the end of next year, describing HD as a “future proof” technology that will allow the carrier to continuously develop its wireless network. An Ericsson product manager says most operators would adopt HD audio since the costs to them often only are software upgrades; he also expects HD to become the new standard in just a few years…