What are VoLTE and LTE in Particular?
In order to understand what VoLTE (Voice over LTE) is, you must first understand how LTE (Long-Term Evolution) technology works. Long-Term Evolution is a modern standard for data transmission on the Internet, which is several times faster than a 3G connection. It is with its help that you can watch videos in HD quality without delay, download files, and upload large files. Just compare this: download speeds in LTE networks can reach up to 300 Mbps, and shipment – up to 170 Mbps. At the same time, the average speed of wired Internet hovers around only 100 Mbps.
However, LTE had a significant limitation for a long time period. This technology is designed only for data transmission, not voice. That means, if you are on an LTE network and receive an incoming call, your gadget automatically switches to 2G / 3G. That aspect causes a delay in the connection. In addition, the data transfer rate, which started in the LTE network, is reduced. So, what has been eventually invented to fix this? The solution to such problems was VoLTE technology.
VoLTE stands for Voice over LTE or 4G. Since the terms 4G and LTE are names for the same technology, they can be used interchangeably. In general, VoLTE technology provides the ability to make voice calls over an LTE / 4G mobile network.
Previously, 4G technology was used exclusively for the Internet. As already mentioned, you could have noticed a delay of several seconds before the caller’s phone starts ringing. Thanks to VoLTE, this delay is a thing of the past. In 2G and 3G networks, calls and data transmission were separate processes that could not be carried out at the same time. For example, when making a call on a 2G network, any incoming text messages at the same time were delivered only after the phone call ended. With 4G LTE, calls and data work simultaneously, which means text messages are delivered immediately, even during a call.
VoLTE’s Capabilities and Benefits. VoLTE over LTE
As you could already understand, VoLTE has an impressive number of advantages over its earlier counterparts, and at the moment this system can be called the standard of the new generation of voice communication. Here we will structure and provide its most significant differences and advantages:
1. Excellent Call Quality
VOLTE is endowed with higher sound quality than with 3G or 2G connections due to the support of a set of HD Voice codex. While in conventional telephony, the sound is transmitted at a frequency of up to 3400 Hz, then when calling via VoLTE, the sound range rises to 7000 Hz or more. The high-speed network transmits improved data that allows you to understand not only what the person is saying on the other end of the line, but also to determine the voice tone of the interlocutor, so you hear human speech without interference or distortion.
2. Ultra-Fast Connection and Large Coverage Area
VoLTE can connect calls 2 times faster than previous networks, and one base station through VoLTE can serve 3 times more subscribers. Communication coverage has increased so much that you can receive signals far from the tower or in buildings where other signals are difficult to penetrate.
3. Battery Charge Economy
With the advent of new technology, the operating time of mobile devices has increased. The mobile network began to support calls and the phone stopped spending energy resources on the constant transition from calls to data transmission and vice versa. All this led to a rapid discharge of the battery.
4. Multitasking and Continuous Connectivity
During a telephone conversation, you can use the LTE network to perform other tasks, comfortably working in this mode. That is, during the call, there is no interruption of the Internet connection or the distribution of traffic in modem mode. You can also talk on the phone at the same time, watch Instagram, download movies, navigate the terrain using the navigator, and so on.
5. Video Calls
Also, a significant advantage these days is the ability to make and receive video calls from someone using VoLTE, without relying on separate services.
But why haven’t we made 4G Calls Before?
The main problem with voice-over LTE was that 4G LTE is a data-only connection, so it didn’t initially support voice calls. And 3G and 2G connections were developed for calls, and only then the Internet was added to them.
Therefore, the developers had to create new protocols to support voice communications over LTE, and this is a lot of work, requiring the reconstruction of the entire voice communications infrastructure.
How do I know if My Phone Supports this Technology? Compatibility with VoLTE
If you own a mobile phone with a 3G connection, then you definitely need an update. And if you, like most smartphones, have 4G enabled, it can work great with VoLTE. Some phones may require special software updates.
VoLTE-Enabled Devices: Which One to Choose?
Today, smartphones with VoLTE are no longer uncommon in electronics stores – on Android, iOS, and Microsoft platforms. Here are the phones that support VoLTE today:
- Almost the entire line of Samsung Galaxy, including S3 LTE, S4, S5, Light, and many others;
- Apple iPhone 6 and above;
- LG G Pro F240S, Optimus LTE 2 F160LV, Optimus LTE III F260S, and some others;
- Nokia Lumia 830;
- ZTE Blade V 8, 9;
- Almost all Xiaomi models;
- Some models of Alcatel, Meizu, HTC, Huawei, Motorola, Google, Sony.
Naturally, this list is quite incomplete, since the list of devices is constantly expanding. Support for this technology is available in gadgets of different price categories. Most of them are of good quality and a full set of other modern functions, so choosing a suitable smartphone with VoLTE will not be difficult.
VoLTE Technology: Implementation and Perspectives in the World
By the beginning of 2018, nine countries have joined the full support of the VoLTE standard, including the United States (joined in 2012), Russia (2016), Australia (2016), Japan (2014), and Romania (2014). Today, most of the European countries are planning to introduce support for VoLTE, in particular Germany, France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Italy, and others.