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AT&T to add HD Voice later this year

SVP says it will be supported as part of VoLTE roll-out, while Verizon may wait until 2014


Published: 2 April, 2013


AT&T plans to start rolling out HD Voice later this year, along with its Voice over LTE deployments, which are likely to pip Verizon's to the post.

Speaking at the VentureBeat Mobile Summit in California, AT&T's SVP Kris Rinner said support for high definition voice calling would begin later this year as the carrier starts to route voice over LTE. "HD Voice is part of our voice over LTE strategy," she said.

The HD feature, which can be deployed on 3G networks too, requires hardware and software support on network and devices, but is then able to offer consumers something over-the-top services cannot - far greater voice clarity and reduced background noise, because more frequency is dedicated to audio. The improvements are best when both ends of the call support HD, but even HD on one handset can enhance the user experience.

European carriers like Orange have pioneered HD Voice on 3G networks, and the French giant has rolled it out in African markets too. T-Mobile says its new iPhone 5 will support HD Voice but Verizon users may have to wait until next year.

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