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Opening of 100% LTE - Mobile Telecommunication Businesses Finish VoLTE Linkage
11/11/2015 | By An, Hochun (hcan@etnews.com)


Generation of 100% LTE that has data and voice-calling use LTE is finally here. Clear quality of sound that is almost identical to original sound, fast connection and new additional services are expected.

Mobile telecommunication businesses also have started on developing new services in response to VoLTE, and it seems that 3G is about to be terminated real soon.

According to communication industry on the 10th, VoLTE linkage between 3 mobile telecommunication businesses is finished, and VoLTE can be used immediately if functions are implemented in cellphones. Starting with demonstration service of VoLTE linkage at the end of June, mobile telecommunication businesses have been pushing for sequential commercialization and they were able to succeed in finalizing commercialization of VoLTE linkage between mobile telecommunication businesses for the first time in the world.

VoLTE processes calling numbers by using a packet (data) method that breaks data into certain sizes and combine them again at a destination. It has higher network efficiency than 2G and 3G’s circuit (voice) method and its voice is natural and clear because it supports wider voice bandwidth (circuit is only 200 Hz ~ 3.4 kHz) up to 50 Hz ~ 7 kHz.

Connection time becomes almost 20 times faster from 5 seconds to 0.25 to 2.5 seconds. While 2G and 3G need time to check whether a cellphone is able to make a call or not, VoLTE always checks cellphones’ status. One can also enjoy HD Voice-Calling that is improved 8 times more than 3G.


Strength of VoLTE is that it provides variety of additional services such as easy change between voice-calling and video-calling, sharing of pictures and videos during a call, and others. Because voice and data are united as one network, each multimedia service is provided at a fast rate and it seems that related combined and complex services appear due to VoLTE linkage.

Mobile telecommunication businesses have started on developing VoLTE services. SK Telecom is releasing ‘Smart Call Forwarding(tentative)’ service, which allows one to receive a call with a equipment with internet, by end of this year, and KT is planning to first apply VoLTE to current additional service. LG Uplus is considering a new service knowing that All-IP service, which is similar to Uwa, will be regularized.

VoLTE function is installed in every cellphones that were released after July of 2012. It is estimated that 32 million users out of 40 million LTE users in South Korea have cellphones with VoLTE function. LG Uplus customers can use VoLTE without any setup. However SK Telecom and KT customers need to set up to use VoLTE because 3G is set up for voice-calling since SK Telecom and KT operate 3G network.

As generation of 100% LTE opens up, 3G is ready to be terminated. However usage rate of VoLTE is not high as only 25% of SK Telecom and KT customers with cellphones with VoLTE function use VoLTE due to lack of publicity and vague misunderstanding.


VoLTE use voice-calling fees and does not reduce separate data or charge extra. One can simply pay for amount of time of making calls just like before and use high-quality voice service by changing setup immediately without additional fees.

Ministry of Science, ICP and Future Planning (MSIP) and 3 mobile telecommunication businesses are planning to hold demonstrations of commercializing VoLTE linkage on the 12th.



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