Vodafone, the second largest telecom service provider in the country, plans to launch its 4G VoLTE services next month. The VoLTE service will be available first in Mumbai, Gujarat, Delhi, Karnataka and Kolkata. The service will eventually be extended across the country.
Vodafone says its 4G VoLTE service will be available beginning January 2018, and rolled out across the country in a “short time”. With the launch of VoLTE, Vodafone will become the third major operator after Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel to offer voice over LTE support. With VoLTE support, Vodafone SuperNet 4G subscribers will be able to experience HD quality voice calls, and faster call connect time.
Vodafone’s 4G VoLTE will be available at no additional cost to its subscribers and customers will only need a device supporting VoLTE and 4G-enabled SIM. “Vodafone is getting Future Ready with the advent of newer technologies and digital services. The introduction of Voice over LTE (VoLTE) will enhance customer experience with HD quality calling and offer our customers newer possibilities. Vodafone VoLTE is an important step towards introducing futuristic technology enhancing our Data Strong Network,” said Sunil Sood, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Vodafone India.
The ability to conduct voice over LTE connection was one of the biggest feature of Reliance Jio’s 4G service when it launched in September last year. The support allowed Jio users to experience crystal clear calls over 4G on the same network. However, it took a year for Bharti Airtel to add support for VoLTE on its network. Airtel launched its 4G VoLTE support with the service going live in Mumbai in September. Since then it has expanded the service to Maharashtra, Goa, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka and Chennai.
With the launch of VoLTE support on Vodafone’s network, Reliance Jio will further consolidate in terms of features available exclusively on its network. Vodafone is also expected to complete its merger with Idea Cellular to create India’s largest telecom network in terms of subscriber base next year.
Vodafone says that it has built a strong data network of nearly 140,000 sites to enable better call quality, and mobile internet experience to its customers. With the telecom industry as a whole fighting over data tariff, the availability of superior network will become only major differentiator for telcos in the country.