Spanish telecoms group Telefonica has demonstrated a technology that transfers mobile telephone calls from a Long Term Evolution (LTE) network to a 3G mobile network seamlessly. According to a company press release, Telefonica Deutschland became the first network provider in the world to demonstrate handover of LTE calls to 3G using Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (SRVCC), with handsets and network components from several different suppliers, including Acme Packet, Ericsson, Huawei, Nokia Siemens Networks, Qualcomm and Sony Mobile. The handover was achieved in Germany in a test laboratory environment that accurately simulates that of a real mobile network. Voice over LTE (VoLTE) moves the transmission of voice traffic off older networks designed primarily for voice and onto a data-only network. At present, LTE networks are not able to handover a VoLTE voice call to 2G or 3G when moving out of LTE coverage, meaning that most networks fall back to a legacy 2G/3G network whenever they make or receive a voice call. According to Telefonica, future benefits of VoLTE could include HD voice services, faster call set-up, HD video calling, chat applications and other rich-media services from any device or location.
‘Telefonica has achieved a significant landmark with the successful testing of this mobile broadband network for the future,’ commented Enrique Blanco, CTO of Telefonica, adding: ‘Most important, however, is our ability to deliver the very best customer experience, which is at the core to our long-term network strategy. With VoLTE, our customers will be seamlessly connected to a superfast intelligent network that not only gives a top quality voice service, but also a network that opens up a new world of opportunities, such as high definition video calls.’