With hundreds of thousands of users, voice over LTE (News - Alert) (VoLTE) is no longer a practical joke. In fact, it has become one of the up and coming technologies that might trump metered phone services in years to come. So far, we're seeing South Korea and the U.S. taking the lead in the global market. Today, South Korean carrier SK Telecom (News - Alert) has just expanded its VoLTE "HD Voice" coverage into the Yellow Sea islands.
The news came about as SK Telecom had a successful trial on the Baengnyeongdo Island, a piece of land sitting approximately 240 miles from Seoul, the country's capital and metropolitan center. Now, the company is expanding its coverage to Baengyeong, Yeonpyeong, and other islands located within the Yellow Sea. This will effectively allow subscribers within the region to send and receive HD voice and video calls. Within the calling sessions, users will also be able to switch around their voice and video capabilities as they see fit.
Stéphane Téral, the principal analyst for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics at Infonetics (News - Alert) Research said, "The U.S. and Asia, especially South Korea, are leading the voice over LTE charge, with Verizon (News - Alert) Wireless, Metro PCS, SK Telecom, and LG U+ all planning to launch VoLTE services this year. In fact, South Korea and Hong Kong have already successfully launched LTE data roaming and by August, SK Telecom expects to have the Samsung Galaxy S3, the first handset to support VoLTE on their network. This is all good news for VoLTE, of course, but to put it in perspective, even with the VoLTE market ramping quickly here on out, by 2016 VoLTE will make up only about 14 percent of global mobile VoIP revenue while over-the-top mobile VoIP continues to make up the lion's share by far."
LTE is far from being the most-used standard in communications technology, but it’s certainly getting there through the Asian market.
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Edited by Jamie Epstein