& cplSiteName &

AT&T's Rinne: Carriers Working on VoLTE Interoperability

Dan Jones
9/9/2014
50%
50%

LAS VEGAS -- Super Mobility Week -- AT&T's Kris Rinne says that the carrier is working with several other operators on enabling direct voice-over-LTE calls between their networks.

Rinne, senior vice president of network and product planning at AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), was nominally at the re-branded CTIA show to talk in her role as the chairperson of the 4G Americas board of governors -- of which, more later. It seemed like a good opportunity, however, to ask a little about AT&T's VoLTE progress.

Particularly as Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) has just unveiled the iPhone 6 with VoLTE onboard. Samsung Corp. 's Galaxy S5 is one of the devices that already has the 4G voice capability, Rinne noted. (See Apple's New iPhones Have 20 LTE Bands, VoLTE).

"We've already got several compatible devices available already, and more coming for the holidays," Rinne says.


Want to know more about machine-to-machine (M2M) communications? Check out Light Reading's dedicated VoLTE channel.


AT&T said in May that it is launching VoLTE in selected areas of Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Wisconsin. "We primarily started in the Chicago area," Rinne tells Light Reading.

AT&T is taking a market-by-market upgrade approach with VoLTE. "We can do that because we have handover capabilities with the UMTS network," she says.

What she means is that GSM-based carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile US Inc. are able to use a newer feature of LTE called single-radio voice call continuity (eSRVCC) that allows users to move between VoLTE and a 2G/3G connection without dropping the call. Rival Verizon Wireless is instead doing a VoLTE launch across its full 4G footprint, because eSRVCC isn't available for CDMA-based networks.

Nonetheless, AT&T still has to do work with each LTE market to ensure it can support VoLTE. Rinne explains that, in particular, in today's LTE network the download rates tend to much higher than the upload rates. "In a VoLTE environment that needs to be symmetrical," she notes. The operator is adding in e911 emergency call support as it moves between markets.

VoLTE will also require a raft of new interoperability work, because without SIP trunking agreements and other tweaks, you can't make VoLTE calls to other operators' networks right now. Rinne says that AT&T is doing "lab-to-lab tests" on VoLTE interoperation right now with several operators. She states that such interoperability will benefit the whole industry.

"That is something that we're working across the industry on -- getting that all-IP interoperability."

VoLTE is further on at AT&T than multicast video at the moment. eMBMS (evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services) -- also known as multicast or broadcast LTE -- allows an operator to stream video to many more users than the network can support today.

Sixteen or more operators are testing multicast now. Verizon is expecting to launch sometime in 2015. (See GSA: 16 Operators Trial LTE Multicast and Verizon's Multicast LTE Video to Arrive in 2015.)

"We've been doing some technology evaluation in that regard," Rinne says. "That's a 2015 or 2015-plus timeframe for us."

So, Rinne is not going to be the one spearheading that work, as she has with much of AT&T's LTE development so far and network upgrades before that. It was recently confirmed that Rinne plans to retire at the end of November. (See AT&T's Kris Rinne to Retire.)

She tells us that she isn't planning to look for another role in tech after she leaves AT&T: "I already have the best job." she says.

"I really hope to be able to take some of the technology and management skills I’ve learned at AT&T and use them to help give back to the community and my church," she tells Light Reading.

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Oldest First  |  Newest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
From The Founder
NFV's promises of automation and virtualization are intriguing, but what really excites service providers is the massive amount of money they could save.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
VMWare VP Brings Women Up With Her

8|16|17   |   6:49   |   (0) comments


It's an art and a science to make mentorship, inclusive leadership, diversity and promotion of high-potential women work, says Honore' LaBourdette, vice president of Global Market Development at VMWare.
LRTV Custom TV
5G Spectrum Wars – The Recap

8|15|17   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


Service provider Three has filed a lawsuit against Ofcom over 5G spectrum auction in the UK.
LRTV Custom TV
Say What? Facebook Unleashes AI Anarchy – The Recap

8|7|17   |     |   (0) comments


A recap of the week's talking points on Light Reading's sister site, telecoms.com. Facebook AI programmers had a bit of a brain-fade as they allowed one of its AI applications to invent its ...
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Fujitsu's Women Band Together to Help Girls Do STEM

8|2|17   |   9:35   |   (1) comment


Supporting women both inside and outside of Fujitsu is a top priority of the telecom vendor. Yanbing Li, Fujitsu Network Communication's director of System Software Development & Delivery, shares why it's important, but why there's still a long road ahead.
LRTV Custom TV
If You're Not First, You're Last – The Recap

7|31|17   |   08:18   |   (1) comment


In case you missed it, Amazon's 1% stock increase helped Jeff Bezos dethrone Bill Gates as the richest man in the world. Also, Taiwanese electronics manufacturer
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
AT&T's Tech President Preps Workforce for the Future

7|26|17   |   5:47   |   (10) comments


AT&T is focused on the software-defined network of the future and is reskilling its workforce to get ready too, according to AT&T's President of Technology Development Melissa Arnoldi.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Cisco: Mentoring Critical to Attract & Retain Women

7|19|17   |   6:40   |   (1) comment


Liz Centoni, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco's Computing System Product Group, shares why mentoring in all its forms is important for women and what Cisco is doing that's made a difference for women in tech.
LRTV Custom TV
Gigabit LTE With Snapdragon 835

7|12|17   |     |   (1) comment


At an event in Wembley stadium, EE used its live network to demonstrate gigabit LTE using a Sony Xperia XZ Premium smartphone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip.
LRTV Custom TV
Implementing Machine Intelligence With Guavus

7|12|17   |     |   (0) comments


Guavus unites big data and machine intelligence, enabling many of the the largest service providers in the world to save money and drive measureable revenue. Learn how applying Machine Intelligence substantially reduces operational costs and in many cases can eliminate subscriber impact, meaning a better subscriber experience and higher NPS.
LRTV Custom TV
Unlocking Customer Experience Insights With Machine Intelligence

7|12|17   |     |   (0) comments


When used to analyze operational data and to drive operational decisions, machine intelligence reduces the number of tasks which require human intervention. Guavus invested in Machine Intelligence early. Learn about the difference between Machine Learning and Machine Intelligence.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Verizon VP Talks Network, Career Planning

7|12|17   |   4:49   |   (0) comments


Heidi Hemmer, vice president of Technology, Strategy & Planning at Verizon, shares how bold bets and the future of tech define her career.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Masergy's NFV Journey

7|11|17   |     |   (0) comments


Ray Watson, vice president of global technology at Masergy, discusses the advantages and challenges in entering the still-maturing NFV market for the past three years.
Upcoming Live Events
September 28, 2017, Denver, CO
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Are Cord-Cutting's Days Numbered?
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 8/14/2017
Intel CEO Leaves Trump Biz Advisory Board
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/15/2017
Analyst Nolle: Fundamental Errors Plague NFV
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 8/11/2017
Snapchat Misses Estimates, Eyes Reality Shows
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 8/11/2017
ATIS: Connected Car Security an Industry-Wide Issue
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 8/10/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Animals with Phones
We Know a Tough Day When We See One Click Here
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.