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Introduction

VoLTE is a necessary part of the LTE journey and provides benefits through reduced costs, an improved voice call experience, and the potential for enhanced call features. Implementing VoLTE, however, has been challenging, and early adopters have had to push the technology and overcome early technical difficulties.

Highlights

  • Although VoLTE delivers a better voice experience and easier integration with advanced features, it is not a driver of incremental revenues, and operators should not expect that they will be able to charge a premium for VoLTE. The better spectral efficiency of moving voice to VoLTE and the longer-term potential to shut down legacy 2G/3G networks can deliver cost savings, which is the primary benefit of launching VoLTE.
  • With its reliance on IMS, interoperability problems with devices and other networks, and the complexity of the end-to-end network integration and optimization, the scale and challenge of implementing VoLTE should not be underestimated. However, operators deploying VoLTE today can leverage the experience of earlier successful VoLTE launches and take advantage of the growing device ecosystem.

Features and Benefits

  • Details the the key benefits of VoLTE, including realizing network efficiencies and cost benefits, improving the voice call experience, and enhancing communication features.
  • Explains why VoLTE network implementation is complex, with IMS, device availability and interoperability, interconnection, and roaming issues all needing to be addressed, and why network optimization and testing are critical to a successful VoLTE launch.

Key questions answered

  • What are the customer and operator benefits of VoLTE?
  • How does VoLTE help operators defend against OTT competitors?
  • What are the challenges of implementing VoLTE, and how should they be addressed?
  • What are the interconnection lessons to be learned from South Korea for regulators and operators?
  • Why is now the right time for operators to be launching VoLTE?

Table of contents

Summary

  • In brief
  • Ovum view
  • Recommendations

The role for VoLTE

  • The global shift to LTE drives the need for VoLTE
  • VoLTE has three main benefits for consumers

VoLTE implementation challenges

  • VoLTE network implementation is complex
  • Device availability and interoperability are improving
  • VoLTE interconnection and roaming are in early days

The way forward with VoLTE

  • The turning point for VoLTE
  • VoLTE is not a premium service
  • Enabling service innovation through IMS
  • More operators planning to launch VoLTE

Appendix

  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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