By Stephen Schenck | August 7, 2012 7:10 PM
We’ve been talking about the pending arrival of Voice over LTE for some time now. After all, now that most of the major carriers are offering LTE service, why continue to send voice calls over older networks? While 2013 looks to be the year that VoLTE could really start hitting the mainstream, one carrier is getting a head start, as MetroPCS announces the launch if its own VoLTE offerings.
While we don’t usually think of MetroPCS as a trailblazer, this move makes a lot of sense. It was the first one in the US to offer LTE data, and its smaller size allows the company to more nimbly adjust to new technologies like this.
The first phone on the carrier to support VoLTE is the dual-core LG Connect 4G, a Gingerbread-based Android announced back around the CES that’s already up for sale with MetroPCS. The actual switch to VoLTE should be transparent to users of the phone, who can continue to place voice calls like normal. Instead of routing them over the carrier’s older CDMA network, though, they’ll now take place using LTE data.
MetroPCS promises news of more VoLTE-supporting gear over the next few weeks. We also know Verizon’s been testing its own VoLTE system, and AT&T’s been eyeing a 2013 VoLTE launch since early last year.