VoLTE v/s OTT (VOIP) – the future of Voice Communication

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Is it really going to affect you? Let’s find out.

Wireless operators across the world are retreating from their older networks and are replacing them with new super speedy 4G LTE networks. However they still face the voice challenge for LTE waiting for VoLTE to become a viable commercial alternative.

Industry experts predict that around 65 cellcos will have live VoLTE by the end of this year. With VoLTE – operators can offer voice, video and messaging services under one umbrella offering. The Voice over LTE, VoLTE concept originated as a result of operators seeking a standardized system for transferring traffic for voice over LTE.

VoLTE offers faster call setup and carrier grade reliability. On the other hand over the top, OTT clients provide web presence, instant messaging (IM), video, and cheaper long-distance rates. There is no clear winner among the two and the topic is still debatable.

With the development of Voice over IP (VoIP) people started moving towards OTT services as a means to make lower cost phone calls. It was a substitute to direct dial calling bypassing the existing Telco PSTN Lines

However, OTT services aren’t an ideal solution either. Not only does a good OTT phone call require good internet connection but it also uses more battery power when compared to cellular calls because of the use of compression schemes to deliver higher voice quality.

Let us summarize the Benefits & Downside of both the technologies below

Technology Advantages Disadvantages

VoLTE

Software is optimized to deliver Crystal clear High Definition voice Relatively Costly to consumers because consumers have a habit of charging more for technological up gradations
Set up calls faster than traditional cellular OTT calls Limited to devices having 4G Hardware
Improved battery life of your Smartphones Interoperability will be a challenge
Calls get priority over other data services which results into reduced dropped call rates
It uses less data when in standby mode than OTT offerings
It consumes less data per call
An all-IP network is easier to manage & operate
Provide value added Services without using 3rd Party Apps – video calling, file transfer, language translation, video voicemail & instant messaging
More-efficient use of operators spectrum, meaning they can serve more customers without additional network investments
Lower operational costs

OTT (VoIP)

Lower Long Distance Call Cost More data per Call
Instant Messaging Uses more battery power on calls
Video Call Combination of analog and digital solutions installed over the years to support voice and data is difficult to manage and operate
Audio and Video Conferencing OTT clients don’t interoperate with each other
Up-to-date status of contact availability Good Internet Connection Required

So the Big Question is? With your smartphones you already make voice calls over data connection with Skype and Hangouts!” What is the need of VoLTE? It is true, you can indeed make voice calls using your data connection however these services work on your 2G / 3G data connection over the Internet, not the traditional voice network from the carriers.

VoLTE is the future of voice communications on all wireless networks. The technology will surely benefit the consumers in the long run but there could also be some hiccups that frustrate consumers in the short term. Technology will evolve in the years to come.

It seems with all the benefits that VoLTE has to offer; operators now have the ability to outperform their rivals. However having the right platform in place is important for ensuring a smooth user experience for subscribers. Elitecore NetVertex PCRF is a carrier grade platform able to handle high TPS requirement for VOLTE, it can be deployed in parallel to existing PCRF solution to cater to VOLTE service and ensure high quality voice to subscribers over LTE. To know more log on www.elitecore.com

 

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