& cplSiteName &

Verizon Beefs Up LTE Network, Nears VoLTE

Sarah Thomas
10/17/2013
50%
50%

Coming off a solid quarter in which it added 1.1 million customers, Verizon Wireless is turning its attention toward augmenting its 4G LTE network as well as launching its first voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) handset in the fourth quarter.

Speaking on the carrier's third-quarter earnings call, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) CFO Fran Shammo played down the speeds of LTE, noting that those only matter when the network is unloaded, instead choosing to talk up what Verizon Wireless is doing to bolster its network in major urban markets like New York, San Francisco, and Chicago.

This work has already started in NYC where the carrier is upgrading its LTE network to 2x20 Mhz channels. (See: Verizon Deploying Fatter 4G Pipes in NYC.)

"We're building the network for a consistent, reliable experience," he said. "Our network engineers designed the network for when it's fully loaded."

With 38 percent of its customers on the 4G network generating 64 percent of data usage, Shammo said it's getting to that point. Right now Verizon's main focus is on deploying its AWS spectrum, but it also plans to reappropriate its 3G spectrum for LTE. Shammo said Verizon's spectrum position is solid for three to four years, but it plans to get in on future auctions as well.

In addition, the CFO said Verizon is being proactive on in-building coverage and densification of cell sites. The work started in the third quarter, he said, but begins in earnest in the fourth.

With 500 markets covered with LTE reaching 97 percent of the US population, or 303 million people, Verizon is now 99 percent done matching its 3G network footprint. Coverage was the key for it to launch VoLTE. Shammo reiterated that Verizon wouldn't start offering 4G voice until it was very similar to what its customers expect from a 3G CDMA call. "It's an unbelievable network," he said of Verizon 3G, and that's why it's taking so long on VoLTE.

"You'll probably see us have a VoLTE capable handset in the fourth quarter and will light up the VoLTE rollout in the first half of next year," Shammo said, echoing the timeline the operator has stated several times in the past. (See: Verizon Preps Network, Waits on Marketing Nod for VoLTE, Verizon Promises Voice-Over-LTE in 2014, and Shades of VoLTE.)

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(15)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/23/2013 | 10:20:33 AM
Re: VoLTE
Hoping to talk to Verizon this week about LTE networking so I'll ask about the maps. It's not even clear to me that any of the carriers totally follow the FCC coverage maps anymore anyway, can't get a straight answer on that at all.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/23/2013 | 10:18:55 AM
Re: VoLTE
That's something I can ask Qualcomm about soon.
davidhoffman
50%
50%
davidhoffman,
User Rank: Light Beer
10/23/2013 | 1:54:47 AM
VoLTE
Verizon's voice and EVDO maps overstate coverage outdoors. So they are matching 99% of the incorrect maps they had before. Brilliant short term thinking. It is long past time for Verizon's management to get tough with the coverage map makers and get the maps to be far more accurate and precise.  Bad data helps to create delusionary thinking by management that the company is doing more than it really is, and alienates cutomers who try to use devices in areas that should have been marked as no service. A case in point, Peebles Drive in Forsyth GA has no signal from Maynard's Mill Road to the end of the dead end street that is Peebles Drive. Verizon's coverage map would have you believe that it is fully covered by voice and data outdoors. It is not coverd at all. 
Gabriel Brown
50%
50%
Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/21/2013 | 4:01:31 AM
Re: VoLTE
Agreed Anil on the importance of handsets. As well as the factors you mention there's a major role for the handset OS to play. MNOs have an influence on this, but fundamentally it's out of their hands.
Gabriel Brown
50%
50%
Gabriel Brown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/21/2013 | 3:58:32 AM
Re: VoLTE
The point about handset CPU load is a good one. This basically means VoLTE needs to be (at least partially) embedded in the chipset.
AnilBhan
50%
50%
AnilBhan,
User Rank: Light Beer
10/21/2013 | 2:00:08 AM
VoLTE
Before laucnhing VoLTE services any carrier has to ensure that quality is consistent with that being provided today. Compared to other data services, customer expectations from voice services are very high. Voice as an application imposes very unique requirements on the network - it requires low bandwidth, can tolerate higher bit error rates but is highly delay sensitive. For the interactive services such as video streaming, any network glitches due to poor SINR get masked by other means such as buffering however the same is not possible with VoLTE. All in all I suppose that the LTE networks rolled out by carriers are first step towards supporting voice and require various voice specific optimizations to ensure consistent minimal SINR throughout the network even under loaded conditions.

Added to this there are specific requirements on the handset side as well relating to support for semi-persistent scheduling which means that not all LTE handsets in the market today would support VoLTE. The carriers have to device a suitable migration strategy for subscribers with such 3G devices.
pzernik
50%
50%
pzernik,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/18/2013 | 8:16:59 AM
Re: VoLTE
A big problem with VoLTE will be that that the technology does not have a way to push voice calls to 3G (CDMA) voice when capacity crosses some threshold level (based on CPU or simultaneous calls).  Verizon and other 3GPP2/3GPP carriers must be able to alter subscribers profiles- to allow or not allow VoLTE- in the HSS based on network loading. 
RitchBlasi
50%
50%
RitchBlasi,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/17/2013 | 2:46:42 PM
VoLTE
$$$$ is always motivational.  :-)
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/17/2013 | 2:33:09 PM
Re: VoLTE
Rich


I'm certain that VoLTE is going to cause US carriers a LOT of headaches to implement. But there is an eventual profit and spectrum motive that benefits them if they get it working, they can start to use 3G spectrum for M2M or 4G and not circuit switched voice. I don't doubt that its going to be hard but $$$ is obviously a motivator in this.
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
10/17/2013 | 1:54:46 PM
Re: VoLTE
Hey, your skeptcism is totally fair, and shared by many. Sounds like even Verizon and AT&T might even share it since they use qualifiers like hopefully and probably. Even when it's network ready, it'll be a marketing decision. Verizon has confirmed that in the past.

And, for the record, I WAS in high school in 2001, but i didn't have a cell phone yet. :)
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
From The Founder
Download our complete guide to de-risking NFV deployment in 2016, including:
  • An eight-step strategy to deploying NFV safely, based on input from the companies that have already started virtualizing their production networks.
  • Interviews with leading executives at Colt, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Cisco, Nokia, ZTE, Ericsson and Heavy Reading.
  • Flash Poll
    Live Streaming Video
    Prepping for the Future: Upskill U Explained
    During this short kick-off video, Doug Webster, Vice President of Service Provider Marketing, Cisco, and Light Reading’s CEO & Founder Steve Saunders give an overview of Upskill U.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Digital Operation Transformation Roundtable Wrap-Up

    5|6|16   |     |   (0) comments


    Industry leaders at the Digital Operation Transformation Summit give their final thoughts at the roundtable.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Peter Sany on Digital Transformation

    5|6|16   |     |   (0) comments


    Peter Sany gives his view on digital transformation at the DOT Summit in Barcelona.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    James McQuivey on Digital Transformation

    5|6|16   |     |   (0) comments


    James McQuivey gives his view on digital transformation at the DOT Summit in Barcelona.
    LRTV Interviews
    Courting the Apartment Crowd

    5|6|16   |     |   (0) comments


    In this LRTV interview, AT&T's Adrian Cardwell details the changing dynamics of the MDU markets and explains how AT&T is pursuing apartment dwellers with GigaPower.
    LRTV Interviews
    Demand Surges for On-Demand Ads

    5|5|16   |     |   (0) comments


    Ed Knudson, VP, Product and Strategy at Canoe Ventures, discusses the rising appeal of VoD ads and the challenges on inserting ads dynamically in live TV programming.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Exclusive: Video Interview With Sckipio CEO David Baum

    5|5|16   |     |   (0) comments


    At his headquarters in Tel Aviv, G.fast visionary David Baum, CEO of Sckipio, provided an exclusive interview to Light Reading and showed how innovations in rate and reach, vector densities, fast reconnecting times and SFP-based residential gateways are expanding the potential of G.fast.
    Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
    Atrinet's NetACE – Migration to NFV & SDN With NetOps-Driven LSO

    5|4|16   |     |   (0) comments


    At Atrinet's headquarters, Ray Le Maistre sits down with Roy Silon to get an in-depth look into the company's focus and the secret recipe for their success.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Amsterdam ArenA, Powered by Huawei

    5|4|16   |     |   (0) comments


    Huawei's ICT solutions power the state-of-the-art Amsterdam ArenA, turning it into a smart stadium.
    LRTV Interviews
    Testing When There's No 'There' There

    5|4|16   |     |   (1) comment


    The benefits of SDN/NFV are well known, but the transition comes with some challenges, prominent among them is: how do you test a network that has been abstracted and has the potential to be endlessly reconfigurable? Light Reading was at NFV World Congress in Santa Clara, Calif., where we bumped into Mats Nordlund, CEO and co-founder of Netrounds, a Swedish ...
    LRTV Interviews
    Ditching the Slash & the Orchestration Wars

    5|3|16   |     |   (2) comments


    SDN and NFV have been inextricably bound with each other for so long that on a conceptual level, smooshing them together into one catch-all phrase – SDNFV – is now justifiable, according to Dan Pitt, executive director of the Open Networking Foundation (ONF). Light Reading spoke to Pitt at the NFV World Congress, where he explained that the next ...
    LRTV Custom TV
    ZTE TV Connect Highlights

    5|3|16   |     |   (0) comments


    ZTE gives us a tour of its booth and new products at TV Connect in London.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Deluxe's Unified Delivery Solution

    5|3|16   |     |   (0) comments


    Join Alan Breznick of Light Reading and visit the Deluxe booth at NAB! Here you'll find Deluxe's Unified Delivery Solution, OTT video, virtual reality, HDR, 4K and much more!
    Upcoming Live Events
    May 23, 2016, Austin, TX
    May 23, 2016, Austin Convention Center
    May 24-25, 2016, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
    September 13-14, 2016, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
    December 6-8, 2016,
    June 16-18, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
    All Upcoming Live Events
    Infographics
    A new survey conducted by Heavy Reading and TM Forum shows that CSPs around the world see the move to digital operations as a necessary part of their overall virtualization strategies.
    Hot Topics
    Sprint CEO: Our Spectrum Is for 5G
    Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 5/3/2016
    WiCipedia: 'Meternity,' Lemonade & Chores
    Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, 5/6/2016
    Upskill U Kicks Off IoT Lectures With Ericsson
    Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Editor, 5/4/2016
    Showdown at the OpenStack Corral
    Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 5/3/2016
    Nokia's Motley: Confidence Paves Career Paths
    Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 5/2/2016
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed
    BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
    In this latest installment of the CEO Chat series, Craig Labovitz, co-founder and CEO of Deepfield, sits down with Light Reading's Steve Saunders in Light Reading's New York City office to discuss how Deepfield fits in with the big data trend and more.
    Grant van Rooyen, president and CEO of Cologix, sits down with Steve Saunders, founder and CEO of Light Reading, in the vendor's New Jersey facility to offer an inside look at the company's success story and discuss the importance of security in the telecom industry.
    Animals with Phones
    Sloth Mail Click Here
    Sloth mail -- somehow even slower than snail mail.
    Live Digital Audio

    Of all the tech companies in the Valley, Intel has made the most aggressive commitment to building a diverse and inclusive workplace culture. It's doing so by taking concrete, measurable steps, making a large financial investment and through a commitment to complete transparency about its progress. In this radio show, WiC Director Sarah Thomas will be joined by Shlomit Weiss, Intel's Vice President, Data Center Group, and General Manager of Networking Engineering, who will share with us why Intel is tackling this huge challenge, how and to what effect. She will also discuss her unique experiences leading development of Client SOC development in the past and today leading development of all of the chipmaker's silicon hardware for networking IPs and discrete devices and managing a team of 600 engineers across Israel, Europe and the US.