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Sprint VoLTE Discussion Thread Redux

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Sprint expects to deploy VoLTE starting this fall

 

It’s been a long time coming. Sprint has been preseeding the market with VoLTE-capable devices, and it expects to finally start commercially deploying VoLTE this fall.

“For more than a year we’ve been testing VoLTE and preseeding our customer base with VoLTE-capable devices in preparation for our commercial deployment starting this fall,” Sprint spokeswoman Adrienne Norton told FierceWirelessTech. “Our network today offers a great HD Voice experience on a very efficient 1x platform, and our goal with VoLTE is to match this same high-quality experience that our customers have today.”

 

The fall timeframe is the closest Sprint has given so far for a launch date after years of testing the technology. Back in 2014, network chief John Saw said the carrier was investing in VoLTE but it wasn’t in a big rush to roll it out. At the time, few carriers had actually deployed it at scale in such a way as to sustain a good voice service. Indeed, some other U.S. carriers ended up pushing back their deployment schedules and interoperability was an issue.

Former Sprint COO of technology Günther Ottendorfer explained in a 2016 Reddit AMA that VoLTE was on the roadmap but the company wanted to make sure customers had an even superior voice experience than what they get today. And HD voice took some pressure off the operator for launching VoLTE.

Fellow CDMA operator U.S. Cellular also took a more measured approach to VoLTE, citing greater challenges with it than its GSM-centric counterparts. U.S. Cellular CEO Kenneth Meyers back in 2016 described it as a “gap” that engineers were trying to overcome by moving gear to the top of towers, among other strategies.

 

 

Bout time. 

 
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Tri-Cities, TN area is ready for VoLTE based upon my observations using Calling Plus on my S8.  Glad to finally hear that Sprint is making the move to VoLTE, gonna be a great year for Sprint.

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I think Calling Plus still needs some work, especially if you have a weak B41 signal.

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21 minutes ago, clbowens said:

I think Calling Plus still needs some work, especially if you have a weak B41 signal.

I think Calling Plus was around only for testing. Letting users place calls over LTE with no prioritization on the network. It was almost like it was a worst case situation type testing. I guess it gave them better insight. From my experience, I used Calling Plus on my S8 to try out android and had no issues with calls breaking up or the other person not being able to hear me. Even on my iPhone X and doing faux VoLTE from a wi-fi calling dropping off onto LTE the calls are clear and the caller could hear me as well. 

 

Now what could set Sprint apart from the rest is if they were able to transition a VoLTE call onto 1x in the event your signal is low.

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5 hours ago, derrph said:

Now what could set Sprint apart from the rest is if they were able to transition a VoLTE call onto 1x in the event your signal is low.

That would be nice indeed, but I think efforts towards that end were scrapped a while ago.

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46 minutes ago, derrph said:

I think Calling Plus was around only for testing. Letting users place calls over LTE with no prioritization on the network. It was almost like it was a worst case situation type testing. I guess it gave them better insight. From my experience, I used Calling Plus on my S8 to try out android and had no issues with calls breaking up or the other person not being able to hear me. Even on my iPhone X and doing faux VoLTE from a wi-fi calling dropping off onto LTE the calls are clear and the caller could hear me as well. 

 

Now what could set Sprint apart from the rest is if they were able to transition a VoLTE call onto 1x in the event your signal is low.

Oh, interesting.

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1 hour ago, derrph said:

I think Calling Plus was around only for testing. Letting users place calls over LTE with no prioritization on the network. It was almost like it was a worst case situation type testing. I guess it gave them better insight. From my experience, I used Calling Plus on my S8 to try out android and had no issues with calls breaking up or the other person not being able to hear me. Even on my iPhone X and doing faux VoLTE from a wi-fi calling dropping off onto LTE the calls are clear and the caller could hear me as well. 

 

Now what could set Sprint apart from the rest is if they were able to transition a VoLTE call onto 1x in the event your signal is low.

Unfortunately that is not possible. If it was they would have had VOLTE long time again and vzw will have that also 

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8 minutes ago, Houston_Texas said:

VoLTE is here? Finally!

Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
 

Well, not until the Fall, but we at least have a time frame now!
 

-Anthony

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Quick question. I don't think I've seen this mentioned before, or I just don't remember, but I can't imagine that I'm the only one to think about it. Has Sprint considered using EVDO/eHRPD to do VoLTE hand-offs to 3G? I would imagine if it's not being done, there is some technical limiting factor about it. I've always understood VoLTE to be a form of VOIP, which I would think means that it can go over any data network, and since eHRPD and LTE can hand-off to one another (or I think it was one can hand off to one but not to the other), then I can't see why Sprint couldn't do this. Of course, my lack of knowledge in the subject of VoLTE doesn't help me, either. :)

 

-Anthony

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In my experience handoffs from LTE to CDMA are almost always accompanied by interruptions in whatever I'm streaming, so I don't see how a handoff from LTE to CDMA would work unless some kind of call waiting function is built in on the network side to prevent a dropped call.   I think it would be super annoying to the average user who would expect it to be a consistent flawless operation, and doesn't understand nor care about any technical challenges and limitations.

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1 hour ago, Joski1624 said:

In my experience handoffs from LTE to CDMA are almost always accompanied by interruptions in whatever I'm streaming, so I don't see how a handoff from LTE to CDMA would work unless some kind of call waiting function is built in on the network side to prevent a dropped call.   I think it would be super annoying to the average user who would expect it to be a consistent flawless operation, and doesn't understand nor care about any technical challenges and limitations.

Now that you mention that, I believe I now remember that eHRPD made it so that CDMA to LTE handoffs would be smooth, but they didn't work the other way around. Which would explain why they couldn't use EVDO for fallback when they leave LTE coverage. This answers my question, thank you!

 

-Anthony

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5 minutes ago, anthony.spina97 said:

Now that you mention that, I believe I now remember that eHRPD made it so that CDMA to LTE handoffs would be smooth, but they didn't work the other way around. Which would explain why they couldn't use EVDO for fallback when they leave LTE coverage. This answers my question, thank you!

 

-Anthony

Well, the network can instruct a device to drop from LTE to eHRPD/EVDO with an RRC release specifying the center frequency of the CDMA carrier...

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1 hour ago, anthony.spina97 said:

Now that you mention that, I believe I now remember that eHRPD made it so that CDMA to LTE handoffs would be smooth, but they didn't work the other way around. Which would explain why they couldn't use EVDO for fallback when they leave LTE coverage. This answers my question, thank you!

 

-Anthony

I don't know what you're talking about, but I've had smooth handoffs from LTE to eHRPD and vice versa for a year and a half now (maybe even more). The only thing I still see issues with is B25 handing off to a Clearwire B41. I need to close whatever data sessions I have in order to see the band change to Clearwire B41. B25 to B26 and vice versa is flawless).

VoLTE to 1xRTT is possible, but it is highly unreliable. I think Sprint is better off just pushing the limits of a weak LTE signal rather than setting a threshold point were calls are handed off to 1x and having a lot of calls drop.

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16 hours ago, greenbastard said:

I don't know what you're talking about, but I've had smooth handoffs from LTE to eHRPD and vice versa for a year and a half now (maybe even more). The only thing I still see issues with is B25 handing off to a Clearwire B41. I need to close whatever data sessions I have in order to see the band change to Clearwire B41. B25 to B26 and vice versa is flawless).

VoLTE to 1xRTT is possible, but it is highly unreliable. I think Sprint is better off just pushing the limits of a weak LTE signal rather than setting a threshold point were calls are handed off to 1x and having a lot of calls drop.

If I remember correctly Verizon has phones hold LTE much longer than it would if the phone were just active with data, etc. when a phone is on a VoLTE call, because even at the weakest of signals data can still be transmitted, the data rate is just so low it's not good for anything other than the very low data rates used by VoLTE. I imagine Sprint will do the same with their LTE network. 

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3 hours ago, Thomas L. said:

If I remember correctly Verizon has phones hold LTE much longer than it would if the phone were just active with data, etc. when a phone is on a VoLTE call, because even at the weakest of signals data can still be transmitted, the data rate is just so low it's not good for anything other than the very low data rates used by VoLTE. I imagine Sprint will do the same with their LTE network. 

I can verify that this is true as Verizon service in my neighborhood is abysmal. When driving in, Verizon phones will often hold a VoLTE call down to -132 to -134 dBm before dropping LTE and thus, the call. 

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VoLTE will apply Puerto Rico market??
Yes

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

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The thing I am most excited about is that Sprint might decide to whitelist a lot more unlocked devices for use on their network. It's kind of annoying that most U.S. carriers only carry Apple, Samsung, LG, and maybe HTC.

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Wondering if this will help Pixel users with wifi calling feature or totally different implementation with VoLTE?

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It's about time. Hopefully lilotimz or wiwavelength/s4gru can answer, but with eHRPD, can calls hand off from LTE to CDMA? Has Sprint made any progress with this? I noticed that it was mentioned earlier but nobody really got a clear answer.

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21 minutes ago, jakeuten said:

It's about time. Hopefully lilotimz or wiwavelength/s4gru can answer, but with eHRPD, can calls hand off from LTE to CDMA? Has Sprint made any progress with this? I noticed that it was mentioned earlier but nobody really got a clear answer.

I know of no reliable way to handoff from eHRPD or 1x to VoLTE.  Sprint has played with VoIP solutions to make it work.  However, I haven't seen hide nor hair regarding any VoIP/VoLTE solution coming.  I think Sprint is going to make a pure VoLTE play here.  And furthermore (this is just a guess), I believe that Sprint will deploy VoLTE in a similar way to AT&T.  Market by market.  Where markets can offer a decent VoLTE experience with the appropriate signal density, they will take it live.  It will likely be a roll out of 1.5-2 years to go systemwide.  It took AT&T forever.

Robert

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2 hours ago, S4GRU said:

Where markets can offer a decent VoLTE experience with the appropriate signal density, they will take it live.  It will likely be a roll out of 1.5-2 years to go systemwide.  It took AT&T forever.

I think it'll be good for them though because it'll allow them to focus upgrades in areas that are lacking the density necessary for a good VoLTE experience.

Do you think Sprint will keep VoLTE and CallingPlus active as separate things when VoLTE launches or do you think they'll end the CallingPlus name and just market WiFi Calling and VoLTE as separate things.

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3 hours ago, Paynefanbro said:

I think it'll be good for them though because it'll allow them to focus upgrades in areas that are lacking the density necessary for a good VoLTE experience.

Do you think Sprint will keep VoLTE and CallingPlus active as separate things when VoLTE launches or do you think they'll end the CallingPlus name and just market WiFi Calling and VoLTE as separate things.

I think they'll keep C+.  Because those devices won't necessarily support Sprint VoLTE.  They won't keep it forever though

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WEll I have mixed feelings about it around here... (granted its new, and feelings are usually mixed)

When its working, its AWESOME.. when I am walking and talking and go into a basement while working... JOKE.  Which there is no way to truly fix it, guess it was the same back in the early days of cell phones..

I will say I was on a call, and they were on wifi or some other HD call on theirs.. and the sound was fantastic

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