GSA’s Mobile HD Voice: Global Update report, published on October 3, 2011, confirms that almost half of EU member countries have commercially launched mobile HD Voice services, or are engaged in trials ahead of planned commercial introduction. However, operator investments in mobile HD Voice extend far beyond Europe, with services now also commercially available in Australia, Canada, the Caribbean, Russia, India and the Asia Pacific region.
HD Voice services are commercially launched on 32 mobile networks in 29 countries and territories – Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, France, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Kenya, Luxembourg, Mauritius, Moldova, Poland, Réunion, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, Uganda, and the UK.
52 HD Voice-capable phones have been launched into the market by leading manufacturers including Alcatel, HTC, LG, Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and ZTE. Many of the latest products are being delivered with the HD Voice feature (W-AMR) set on as default.
Mobile HD Voice uses Adaptive Multi Rate Wideband technology (W-AMR) standardized by 3GPP, and enables high-quality voice calls in mobile networks and an improved user experience. It provides significantly higher voice quality for calls between mobile phones supporting the feature, and can be implemented in GSM and WCDMA (UMTS) networks. The industry recently introduced a new logo to identify mobile HD Voice-compatible devices and services.
Alan Hadden, President of the GSA, said: “Operators are deploying mobile HD Voice services on GSM networks as well as 3G/HSPA networks. The availability of HD Voice-capable phones improved dramatically in recent weeks. The new HD Voice logo launched by the industry will help subscribers identify which phones support HD Voice, and where Mobile HD Voice network services are available.”
There is a strong business case for Mobile HD Voice. Customers make more, or longer, calls with HD Voice, and highly value the service. HD Voice helps operators to clearly differentiate their offerings and enable high quality services to voice dependent business like call center services, information services, emergency services, etc. HD Voice is also ideal for conference calls and can contribute to a reduction in business travel and raise productivity while reducing the environmental impact. Calls which are easier to hear and understand reduce the fatigue typically associated with long conference calls.
The maximum benefits from using HD Voice on a mobile HD-capable network are realized or perceived when both calling and called parties use HD Voice-capable phones. Improvements in call quality are often observed even when calling a non-HD Voice phone, due to improvements in the acoustic performance and advanced noise reduction capabilities which are present in most HD Voice phones.
Mobile HD Voice: Global Update report (requires log-in)