Vodafone UK holds first VoLTE calls

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Vodafone UK is moving closer to launching VoLTE commercially, after holding trials in its Newbury head offices.

The operator recently made its first successful call at its UK lab, as part of an ongoing trial of the technology. Vodafone said it is aiming to bring faster call connection times, high quality video calling and an improvement in call quality and performance to its 4G customers.

It is unclear when the service will launch although UK rival EE has said it will bring VoLTE to its customers during 2015.

Fergal Kelly, CTO at Vodafone UK, commented: “We’ve been continually developing and investing heavily in our UK network since it launched nearly 30 years ago. Our trial of VoLTE, less than a year after the launch of our 4G network, is the next major innovation, and is hugely important as we continue our work to build the UK’s best network.”

The trial is the latest experiment the operator is holding with 4G technology. In May, Vodafone launched a small cell trial at its Newbury offices with Huawei. It tested 4G on 2.6GHz spectrum, with employees and visitors achieving downlink speeds of up to 82MBps and uplink speeds of up to 42MBps.

Vodafone is spending £1 billion on its 4G network this year and has rolled out LTE to 263 large towns and cities.

Other Vodafone territories are also testing LTE technologies. Its Dutch business is aiming to begin trials of VoLTE by the end of 2014, with a commercial launch expected near year. Carrier aggregation is expected to hit 10 cities this autumn.

Meanwhile, in Germany, Vodafone held LTE broadcast trials in partnership with Huawei to broadcast footage of the Kieler Woche boat race.

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