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Verizon Promises VoLTE This Year Supported by “Tangible Volume of Handsets”

Tue, 05/20/2014 - 5:02pm
Ben Munson

Verizon Wireless today is reminding its customers it hasn’t forgotten to launch VoLTE, promising the service will rollout nationwide later this year.

Verizon reiterated its focus on a “standards-based implementation” of the technology supported by a “tangible volume of handsets.” The carrier is promising a “robust line-up” of VoLTE devices will be available at launch as well as an over-the-air update to make select devices already in service compatible with VoLTE.

Verizon is also promising video calling over VoLTE, saying that customers will have the ability to switch calls from voice-only to voice and video. Further down the road, the carrier sees Rich Communications Services (RCS) features; like “large file transfer, more robust group messaging, and more location sharing,” coming to subscribers.

VoLTE has been in the pipeline for Verizon for a while now but with AT&T last week officially launching VoLTE in a few markets—with only one compatible device—Verizon obviously felt compelled to give an update.

AT&T launched VoLTE in select markets in Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Wisconsin. On May 23, the carrier will begin selling the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini, which will be able to use the service.

Sprint has already begun offering its HD Voice service, which uses a different industry standard than the AMR-wideband Verizon is using. Sprint launched HD Voice service in markets like Boston and Philadelphia, and reports have said the carrier plans to go nationwide with HD Voice in July.

MetroPCS in 2012 was the first U.S. carrier to launch VoLTE.

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