Routing voice calls over the high-speed, high-bandwidth, high-efficiency LTE network makes all the sense in the world. Beyond making better use of sparse spectrum resources, voice over LTE (VoLTE) allows for the use of much higher-end sampling and compressions systems than standard GSM voice calls, resulting in pronounced call audio-quality improvements. Really, the biggest problem with VoLTE so far has been its limited availability: even if you had a phone that was compatible with your carrier’s VoLTE offering, for many users you could only enjoy those VoLTE benefits when calling someone else on the same network. AT&T’s got some good news on that front, as it shares word of its first cross-carrier VoLTE calls.
AT&T just issued a statement highlighting the growing state of its VoLTE capabilities. That includes the note that earlier in December the carrier pulled off “the first VoLTE exchange between our customers and another carrier in limited, select areas.”
While AT&T declines to say any more about just where those areas are where cross-network VoLTE access is available, nor about who these AT&T subscribers might have been talking with (though Verizon is a likely candidate), it’s still good to be getting – even if this progress doesn’t sound like much more than baby steps so far.
We look forward to the cross-carrier growth of VoLTE to only continue as we move into 2016. With any luck, the future will be sounding a whole lot better for all of us.