Verizon VoLTE Launch Imminent: HD Voice & Video Calls

Verizon will begin its Voice over LTE (VoLTE) roll-out over the next few weeks, pushing HD Voice and video calls over the carrier's 4G data network. The much-promised technology, which marks the beginning of a shift away from CDMA voice calls, will require compatible handsets on both ends of the call – whether audio or video – though Verizon says that several devices will be eligible after a software update.

Verizon is referring to the system as Advanced Calling 1.0, and promising not only better quality but easier usability in the process.

HD Voice's advantage is obvious, with higher resolution audio for more lifelike speech. It's supported both in voice calls and in the audio component of video calls, too.

As for those video calls, switching to them from a regular voice call will be easier as well. Currently, that would require dropping a CDMA voice call and then starting up a completely separate data connection, but with VoLTE it'll be a far simpler switch.

In fact, on VoLTE-compatible phones, the contact list will show a video camera icon right next to the individual's name when they're available for video chat.

Further down the roadmap are things like large file transfers, more robust group messaging, and increased location sharing.

Both ends of the call will need to have a VoLTE-compatible device and be in 4G coverage; anyone else will get the usual video call service and CDMA voice, as will landlines. Right now, we still don't know exactly which handsets will get the upgrade first.

SOURCE Verizon Wireless