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Tele2 Readies VoLTE

Ray Le Maistre
11/8/2013

European communications service provider Tele2 is getting ready to offer VoLTE services to its 4G customers in Sweden, with the operator's group chief technology and information officer keen to make the most of the "amazing quality" capabilities of Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (SRVCC).

Speaking at the Huawei Global Mobile Broadband Forum in London this week, Joachim Horn said the service had been tested, and the supporting technology was now "in implementation… We're aiming to launch in 2014. The service has amazing quality -- I have experienced that at SK Telecom in South Korea." (See: 4G Finally Gets a Voice.)

Tele2 AB (Nasdaq: TLTO) isn't just launching VoLTE in Sweden: The operator is launching a 4G LTE-only service in The Netherlands that will "have VoLTE from day 1" based on an IMS platform from Mavenir.

The next big challenge, though, is to get the handsets users will demand. Horn admitted it might be 2015 before there is a decent volume of smartphones with native VoLTE support.

— Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

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Sarah Thomas
Sarah Thomas
11/11/2013 | 1:37:59 PM
Re: VoLTE launches
That's interesting/surprising that it's easier (cheaper?) to go LTE-only versus keep 3G around for handoff. Having a 3G network for fallback has been touted as a strength of AT&T's versus Verizon, but I guess it's not surprising to hear it's hard to accomplish SR-VCC from a tech perspective.
Gabriel Brown
Gabriel Brown
11/11/2013 | 4:52:20 AM
Re: VoLTE launches
Dan -- yes handset support is probably the biggest outstanding issue. Until iOS supoprts VoLTE natively operators will need to rely on Android builds from Samsung, HTC, Sony, Motorola, Huawei, etc.
Gabriel Brown
Gabriel Brown
11/11/2013 | 4:50:24 AM
Re: VoLTE launches
The way I heard Horn's presentation is that Tele2 has tested SR-VCC and is not sure if it's worth the effort (it involves complicated interactions with the legacy MSC core). It might be easier to build-out enough coverage for VoLTE to operate without handover to 2G/3G.

This looks to be the approach it will take in the Netherlands (easy to cover) where Tele2 is a greenfield new entrant with low band spectrum. In other markets the approach may be different.
DOShea
DOShea
11/10/2013 | 8:19:42 PM
Re: VoLTE launches
Yet, despite all the work, it doesn't sound like handset volume is where it needs to be. Is that going to leave these early launches wanting?
Sarah Thomas
Sarah Thomas
11/8/2013 | 6:05:25 PM
VoLTE launches
Good for Mavenir to have a customer win to talk about fresh off its IPO. Will be interested to see what hiccups these VoLTE launches have. The operators have been working so long and hard on VoLTE, you'd expect it to be pretty seamless from day one.
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