Last week, the New York Times discussed cellular quality in its Personal Tech section. HD voice and HD voice interoperability were among the topics.
“Remedies for Better Cellphone Signal and Quality” discusses how to get better quality cellular reception through the use of microcells, signal boosters, and Wi-Fi; sound quality including HD voice and HD voice intercarrier calls; and the best way to get a cell call — forwarded to a landline.
The article is at - http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/27/technology/personaltech/remedies-to-enhance-cellphone-signal-and-sound-quality.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
KPN subsidiary iBase has announced a pair of IPX deals with Chunghwa Telecom of Taiwan and TeliaSonera, the dominant carrier of Sweden and Finland. The former deal features HD voice while the latter one emphasizes a larger LTE roaming network.
Chunghwa Telecom(CLP) is the leading telecom carrier in Taiwan. HD voice will be the first IPX-based service Chunghwa will launch, according to the iBasis press release. Transcoding between wideband codecs, as well as wideband and narrowband codecs, will be supported. CLP launched HD voice on its 3G network in February 2013.
LTE will be launched in Taiwan in 2014, with the two companies supporting Voice over LTE (VoLTE) over IPX
TeliaSonera’s LTE Roaming peering agreement with iBasis will ensure interoperability and a constant user experience for roaming LTE subscribers. The two are interconnecting Diameter signaling and data hubs to enable LTE roaming, as well as migrate all legacy services to the IPX interconnect.
In February 2013, TeliaSonera introduced LTE roaming. Its IPX network with 200+ POPs was launched in May 2013. The company turned HD voice on its Chess subsidiary in Norway last month.
Magyar Telekom (MTel), T-Mobile’s Hungary subsidiary, has officially launched HD voice in Hungary.
MTel is the first carrier in Hungary to introduce HD voice and appears to support HD voice both on its 3G and 4G LTE networks with a supported phone; it isn’t clear if the carrier is rolling out VoLTE or the HD voice service simply falls back to the 3G network.
Handsets supported include the iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S4, S3, Nokia Lumina 820 and 920.
In the press release, Deutsche Telekom says it provides HD voice in Austria, Poland, the Czech Republic, Romania, and the United States via T-Mobile USA.
The crew at iTweakiOS has released a hacked version of iOS for Apple iPhones on the AT&T network, supporting HD voice today on the 4S and 5 on the AT&T network. It suggests AT&T will be supporting HD voice across all of its cellular network, not just the LTE portion.
A few weeks ago, iTweakiOS released a hacked version of iOS for devices on T-Mobile’s network adding HD voice support to the Apple iPhone 4 and 4S.
Release notes for the hack include the following; “AT&T is also currently in the process of enabling AMR-WB (AMR 13) which is the codec that enables HD Voice so you may not recieve [sic] HD Voice in every area but is set for public release sometime this year.” This implies that AT&T will be turning up HD voice both on its 3G/HSPA network as well as delivering HD voice via Voice over LTE (VoLTE) sometime by the end of the year.
Vodafone Oz is adding HD voice, according to Lifehacker downunder. The report is supported by a June 14 report by Ausdroid, saying trials were taking place.
The service is being offered on 2G and 3G networks, says the report, with a “short list” of phones being supported: Apple iPhone 5, the Samsung Galaxy S II, III or 4, and the Sony Experia Z and SP.
Lifehacker notes that both parties (currently) have to be on the same network to make an HD voice call, since there are not (currently) agreements in place to exchange calls between carriers either in-country or internationally.
(HD Voice News uses “currently” because Lifehacker erroneously says “the technology doesn’t” support exchanging HD voice. It’s not a matter of TECHNOLOGY, it’s a matter of carriers enabling exchange points and agreements to swap HD voice calls transparently. Carriers know they have to work out call exchange and some are, but it hasn’t been widely discussed.)
Australia now has two mobile carriers offering HD voice. Telstra launched HD voice on its 3G network just about two years ago today, in 2011.
HD Voice News Editor-in-Chief Doug Mohney discussed the state of HD voice on the VUC Google Hangout on May 17, 2013. The total discussion is about an hour and 22 minutes and can be found on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLOX7s9MfAY
I wish the session had been HyperVoice-ed, so I and others could search the discussion rather than having to run through the whole thing. Apparently, VUC is looking at HyperVoice, but I haven’t heard anything of late.
Chess, owned by TeleSonera, has launched LTE service with support for HD voice, according to press reports out of Norway.
The translation via Google isn’t clear if Chess is currently delivering HD voice via VoLTE today/now or if VoLTE is a feature to be deployed in the future.
Chess’ launch gives Norway two carriers supporting HD voice. Telenor launched HD voice service on its 3G HSPA+ network in March.
Parent TeleSonera launched LTE commercially back in December 2009 in Sweden. It is the dominant phone company and mobile network operator in Sweden and France.
COSMOTE, the largest mobile carrier in Greece, is now offering HD voice on its 3G network.
Service was announced on June 11, 2013. COSMOTE covers over 93 percent of the country’s population and had 7.9 million subscribers in 2011.
Terms and conditions for HD voice are the same as in other countries; i.e., Callers must be on the same network, no additional charge for HD voice cals.
The iTweakiOS team (www.itweakios.com) has released a hacked version of IOS for T-Mobile USA Apple iPhones, adding HD voice support for the iPhone 4 and 4S. It will be interesting to see if the hack propagates around the world.
As previously noted by HD Voice News, the Apple iPhone 4 and 4S are both clearly capable of supporting HD voice from a hardware standpoint. Apple chose to limit use of the AMR-WB codec to the iPhone 5, most likely because it wanted people to upgrade sooner. The company has been particularly
T-Mobile rolled out support for HD voice and the AMR-WB codec in the late fall of 2012 and officially announced it at CES 2013 in January. The carrier has a policy of allowing any unlocked GSM device to connect to its network, including “jailbroken” Apple phones.
Washington D.C. – Residential handsets were in near zero quantities on the floor of The Cable Show, with the industry showing its embrace of smartphones and tablets as the primary interface to everything.
The only handset was in Arris’ booth next to a functioning model of Comcast’s XG5, known within Arris as the MG2402. Comcast plans to – some day – migrate its residential CPE to a loaded “headless” cable gateway, using it to distribute video within the home with cheaper client. The device includes support for 802.11ac, MoCA, and DECT with CAT-iq 2.0 support (firmware upgradable to 2.1).
Since CAT-iq 2.0 is full-blown HD voice using G.722 and all the bells and whistles for residential call handling, Comcast has (finally) found a piece of HD voice residential CPE it is happy with.
Comcast has not announced a timetable when or how it will start rolling out XG5, but it is unlikely that boxes will end up in households anytime before the fall of this year – or later. At least CAT-iq handset manufacturers have a new market to look forward to sometime in the future.
A demonstration in Alcatel Lucent’s booth featured a live WebRTC gateway/SBC demo between a laptop running Google’s Chrome and a SIP endpoint, the consumer-market Biscotti video conferencing device.
Biscotti doesn’t support WebRTC codecs, so the Alcatel Lucent WebRTC SBC provides transcoding between Opus and VP8 and Biscotti’s codecs. A Biscotti executive said the device supports G.722 and H.264 – an interesting revelation given when the device was initially launched back in 2011, company support personnel and PR said the device used “proprietary” codecs – and the company was “looking at” supporting Opus and VP8 via a firmware upgrade.