Light Reading

Sprint's Hesse: HD Voice Goes Nationwide in July

Dan Jones
3/25/2014
50%
50%

BOSTON -- Oracle Industry Connect -- Sprint CEO Dan Hesse revealed in his keynote here Tuesday that the operator is ready to launch its HD Voice service across the US in July.

HD Voice increases the clarity of a voice call across seven octaves, as opposed to the four octaves that many current smartphones support. Sprint seen some delays to the service, which it first expected to have available in 2013, it is so far only deployed in a few markets like Kansas City. (See Sprint Commits to Tri-Band, HD Voice Phones, Sprint Bringing Spark to Kansas City, and Sprint Delays HD Voice Launch to Q2.)

"Voice is still the killer app," Hesse told the crowd.

"Some of you may have experienced [HD Voice], we've launched in a few markets," he said. "We'll launch the entire country around the first of July."

Deep Dish
Having spectrum band options allows Sprint to offer a 4G pizza, 'with extra toppings,' Hesse explains.
Having spectrum band options allows Sprint to offer a 4G pizza, "with extra toppings," Hesse explains.

Hesse also took the time to try and explain Sprint's "Spark" 4G update plans. "I'm told this is a technical crowd," he said.

As the image above shows, Sprint is using its Clearwire-derived 2.5GHz spectrum for LTE speed and capacity. The 1900MHz 4G portion gets more coverage and capacity, while the 800MHz LTE signals go a long way for better coverage. (See Stephen Bye: Sprint's Network Visionary and Igniting the Future: Sprint Spark.)

Hesse says that Sprint can also eek more range out of 2.5GHz LTE TDD spectrum with "8 transmitters and 8 receivers in one box" (8T8R) at the cellsite and MIMO (multiple antenna arrays) on the device.

Combining this with carrier aggregation -- bonding unrelated radio channels for a fatter pipe -- could give Sprint 120MHz of spectrum to play with in the second half of 2015, Hesse said.

"That's two big channels of 60MHz," he adds. "We're talking 18 months away."

The company expects that this update could lead to device download speeds of 150 Mbit/s to 180 Mbit/s.

Hesse told them that this is what justified the company's buyout of long-time partner Clearwire, access to 90MHz of 2.5GHz spectrum across the US. "You need these super big highways and that's why we spent all the money for Clearwire," he said. John Saw, former CTO of Clearwire, and the man behind the company's LTE strategy, has just taken over as chief networks officer at Sprint. (See John Saw to Become Sprint Network Boss.)

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

(12)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
mjgraves
100%
0%
mjgraves,
User Rank: Lightning
3/26/2014 | 3:46:02 PM
Re: What about VoLTE?
My understanding is that VoLTE and 3G (HSPA/HSPA+) implementations of HDVoice use the AMR-WB familiy of codecs. That means that the baseline performance is 50 Hz - 7 KHz, not unlike what you experience with G.722 on a wireline network today.

The difference between narrowband (G.711/G.729/AMR) and wideband (G.722/AMR-WB) is substantial, definitely worth the effort.

The difference between wideband and "super-wideband" (G.719, SILK, some modes of Opus or AMR-WB+) may not be a dramatic for the purpose of voice.

Some time ago I was asked to give a presentation at Astricon about the implementation of Polycom's Siren codes in Asterisk. That presentation included some recorded comparisons between narrowband, wideband and super-wideband in several languages. They can be found online here:

http://www.mgraves.org/2009/10/asterisk-hdvoice-hearing-the-siren%E2%80%99s-song-part-2/2/

 
KBode
50%
50%
KBode,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/26/2014 | 1:05:07 PM
Re: What about VoLTE?
Yeah that's something I don't understand and perhaps it's something Dan knows. My understanding is that HD voice is sort of VoLTE light. Is that wrong? I know the interoperability is going to be a headache for VoLTE for years still, so is HD Voice just the next best thing until then?
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
3/26/2014 | 11:44:47 AM
Re: What about VoLTE?
That's a great question. They are different codecs, but my understanding is that all VoLTE is HD, so you'd think they'd be the same. But, if they are, why bother with HD Voice? Why not just work on VoLTE? I guess the fact that 3G will be around a long while longer could be the main reason.
Kruz
50%
50%
Kruz,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/26/2014 | 11:17:32 AM
Re: Competitive advantage?
Benefits from HD voice are numerous:

Studies in Ericsson Consumer Labs showed that 96% of customers were quite satisfied with their calls and 21% had longer calls with HD voice. HD voice can also help introduce enhancements in voice Recognition and Conference Calling offerings for enterprises.

The best case that illustrates the benefits of the introduction of HD voice is Megafon Russia where it was released in q4 2010 and had a direct impact of 37.4% on voice revenues.
Kruz
100%
0%
Kruz,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/26/2014 | 11:03:15 AM
Re: Competitive advantage?
Quality is still a key concern for OTT players and operators have the advantage of security, prioritization and service offerings with HD voice.
KBode
50%
50%
KBode,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/26/2014 | 9:21:23 AM
Re: What about VoLTE?
How discernable is voice quality between this implementation of HD Voice and what VoLTE would offer? Is the human ear even capable of telling the difference after a while? I'd love to sit down with both implementations for a test somehow.
SarahReedy
100%
0%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
3/25/2014 | 7:47:44 PM
Re: Competitive advantage?
It requires a lot of different network elements and devices to be upgraded to get the full value of it, but when you do, it is a nice advantage. Bad voice quality is still a really big problem. HD Voice fixes that. 

I think VOIP is a threat to voice, just not a big enough one to light a fire.
SarahReedy
50%
50%
SarahReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
3/25/2014 | 7:46:43 PM
Re: What about VoLTE?
I'll be there, and I'll ask the question if it doesn't come up! :)
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
3/25/2014 | 5:36:24 PM
Re: What about VoLTE?
No clue on VoLTE that I could see, although, they've been rolling it out with the Spark updates.
Kevin Mitchell
100%
0%
Kevin Mitchell,
User Rank: Lightning
3/25/2014 | 5:09:04 PM
Re: What about VoLTE?
Come to the VoLTE session at CCA Thursday. Sprint is speaking
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Network architects aiming to upgrade their networks to support agile, open, virtualized services in the 21st century need to consider new criteria when choosing between technology suppliers.
Live Streaming Video
BTE 2015 Sponsor Keynote: HP
Dr. Prodip Sen, CTO, Network Functions Virtualization, HP
LRTV Custom TV
Red Hat Demo

7|2|15   |   10:53   |   (0) comments


Red Hat's Nicolas Lemieux demonstrates how Red Hat is driving innovation through open source communities.
LRTV Custom TV
Red Hat's Approach to OpenStack Adoption

7|2|15   |   5:17   |   (0) comments


Red Hat's Radhesh Balakrishnan outlines his company's open source strategy for both enterprises and telcos.
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Goes Mobile With vEPC

7|2|15   |   1:12   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Gabriel Brown discusses results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade that shows a clear commitment by mobile operators to move quickly to virtual EPC deployment.
LRTV Custom TV
Making Business Sense of SDN

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Results of a Brocade-sponsored survey show that CSPs have a clear sense of SDN use cases but are wrestling with the business case. Sterling Perrin of Heavy Reading looks behind the numbers.
LRTV Custom TV
NFV Will Be Here Sooner Than You Think

7|2|15   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


Forget the usual ten-year cycle for new technologies – NFV will be a core part of CSP networks in five years, based on results of a Brocade-sponsored survey, says Heavy Reading's Caroline Chappell.
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Gains Traction With CSPs

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Roz Roseboro of Heavy Reading analyzes results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade showing that CSPs are getting serious about making the transition to the New IP era.
LRTV Custom TV
It's (Real) Time for Analytics

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges looks at how CSPs say they plan to use analytics to deploy new services in real time as part of The New IP, based on results of a survey sponsored by Brocade.
LRTV Documentaries
IoT in Action

6|30|15   |   1:39   |   (7) comments


Two co-workers discuss the benefits of IoT technology.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson Opens Up on OPNFV

6|30|15   |   14:16   |   (1) comment


Martin Bäckström, VP and head of industry area Datacom at Ericsson, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the emergence of OPNFV, the importance of standards and Ericsson's OPNFV plans.
LRTV Custom TV
NetNumber Founder Discusses NFV/SDN Impact on SP Networks

6|26|15   |   4:15   |   (0) comments


NetNumber Founder Doug Ranalli examines why SPs need a new network infrastructure for service agility. While NFV and SDN are the tools, the old ways of thinking about signaling control are inhibitors. Doug provides his recommendations.
LRTV Custom TV
Orchestrating NFV vCPE Services Across Multivendor Networks

6|26|15   |   5:46   |   (0) comments


Nirav Modi provides an overview of vCPE, the fastest-growing NFV use case, showing how Cyan's Blue Planet orchestrates vCPE services across a multivendor infrastructure to rapidly deliver new managed services for business customers.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE at LTE Summit Amsterdam 2015

6|26|15   |     |   (0) comments


As one of the leading global telecommunications providers, ZTE presented its cutting-edge technology at LTE World Summit 2015 in Amsterdam. On display at ZTE's booth were the latest R&D achievements in wireless, 5G development, HetNet, deep convergence of FDD and TDD, and RCS/IMD/iSDN/vCN.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 6, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Who's Feeding Fiber to LinkNYC Hotspots?
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/29/2015
Colt to Jettison Ailing IT Business
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/30/2015
Eurobites: Activist Investor Takes Stake in AlcaLu
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 6/30/2015
What's a Gigabit Good For?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/1/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Casa Systems has been going from strength to strength over the last couple of years. In 2013, it became the first vendor to ship an integrated CCAP device -- the ...
Cedrik Neike, SVP of Global Service Provider, Service Delivery, at Cisco, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about solving service provider customer problems in a virtualized, DevOps world, including multivendor support and the future of network procurement.
Cats with Phones