LTE makes headway on global roaming, speed and voice

The first operators are now rolling out LTE-Advanced functionality, while Swisscom has showed global roaming is possible

By , IDG News Service |  Networking

On Thursday, Ericsson demonstrated HD Voice calls and video calls over TD-LTE or LTE-TDD (Time-Division Duplex) networks using a commercial LTE smartphone from Sony at its Wireless Innovation Lab & Demo Center in Shanghai.

Sony's Xperia SP M35t phone supports TDD and FDD versions of LTE, as well as TD-SCDMA, HSPA and GSM. Sony announced the smartphone this week and will begin selling it when 4G licenses are finally awarded in China, something that is expected to happen this year.

This is the first time a commercial 4G phone has been used to show HD voice over TD-LTE, and it marks a key milestone in the maturity of the TD-LTE ecosystem, according to Ericsson.

TD-LTE uses one channel for both upload and download traffic, compared to LTE-FDD, which uses separate channels for download and upload traffic. Calls can now be made on the two network types and between them, as well.

"We strongly believe that FDD and TDD will grow together into one network," Narvinger said.

Voice over LTE (VoLTE) has so far seen little success, and has only been rolled out by a small number of operators. But Narvinger thinks that successful launches in South Korea will help increase its popularity.

"That has shown it works well, and that has increased interest globally," he said.

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