Wireless • Last Updated 1/11/2024

Voice over LTE Explained: Next-Gen Calling Tech

Voice over LTE (VoLTE) transformed communications in 2012. Learn about VoLTE and why it’s still important today.


By Kelsie Anderson

Overlapping green Telnyx logos on a black background

Have you ever wondered why some phone calls sound as clear as a face-to-face conversation while others are fraught with static or echoes? The answer lies in a transformative technology known as Voice over LTE, or VoLTE.

VoLTE isn't just another tech acronym. It's a groundbreaking solution that ushered in high-quality, crystal-clear audio and a plethora of exciting features that have been redefining our communication experiences since 2012.

VoLTE is a powerful tool for businesses, boosting their operational efficiency and communication standards. Its capacity to deliver incredibly clear, lifelike voice calls ensures seamless internal and external communication. Moreover, VoLTE's quick call setup times eliminate delays, establishing swift, uninterrupted business dealings. At this point, VoLTE is the industry standard, transforming the business calling landscape and enabling organizations to communicate effectively.

Although VoLTE has been in use for over a decade, its capabilities are still helping us improve the communications landscape. In this post, we’ll explain what VoLTE is, how it works, and why we’re still excited about its developments in 2023. Keep reading to learn more.

What is VoLTE?

Voice over LTE is a standard for high-speed wireless communication that allows voice calls to be carried over a device's 4G or 5G LTE data connection rather than the traditional voice network. This technology has significantly improved call quality, call setup times, and the ability to use data while on a call.

VoLTE operates based on the IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) network, with specific profiles for control and media planes of voice service on LTE. This technology enables the transmission of voice calls as data packets—similar to how emails, social media content, and websites are transmitted over the internet. This process is a significant shift from traditional voice calls, which are transmitted over a dedicated line within a mobile network.

How VoLTE is still enabling better communication

VoLTE plays a pivotal role in shaping our communication experiences. Offering unparalleled call quality, seamless connectivity, and the ability to multitask via mobile networks, VoLTE is persistently enhancing the way we communicate. Let's explore how VoLTE is still helping us improve communication after its introduction over a decade ago.

Transitioning to 4G and 5G networks

As the world continues to phase out older 2G and 3G networks, VoLTE is becoming the standard for voice calls on 4G and 5G networks. This transition ensures high-quality voice calls on these newer, faster networks.

Why your business should care VoLTE’s superior call quality can lead to more effective communication between your employees, as well as between your clients or customers. Its faster call setup times can also increase efficiency, especially in businesses where phone communication is frequent.

4G and 5G networks, along with VoLTE, also enable a range of advanced services such as video conferencing, high-quality video streaming, and real-time data sharing, which can enhance business operations. The networks also offer more reliable service, leading to smoother, more reliable communication, which is crucial for business operations.

Finally, for businesses operating in a global environment, VoLTE can help you ensure improved call quality and connectivity even when roaming internationally.

Meeting the demand for high-quality voice calls

VoLTE offers superior call quality compared to traditional voice calls. As businesses and individuals continue to demand better quality in their communications, VoLTE's relevance grows.

Why your business should care High-quality voice calls ensure clear and effective communication. Misunderstandings or miscommunications can lead to mistakes, inefficiencies, or even lost business opportunities. Clear voice calls can help prevent these issues.

High-quality voice calls also reflect professionalism. Poor call quality can leave a negative impression and may make a business appear less professional or reliable. In contrast, clear, crisp audio makes interactions more pleasant for customers, leading to higher satisfaction.

And for businesses operating internationally, high-quality voice calls are essential. Accents, language differences, and poor connections can all impede understanding in international calls. High-quality voice calls can help overcome these challenges.

More efficient use of spectrum

VoLTE allows operators to bundle voice and data on the same network, making more efficient use of the available network spectrum. This bundling is increasingly crucial as the demand for data continues to rise.

Why your business should care First and foremost, bundling voice and data on the same network can help you save on costs associated with maintaining separate networks. More efficient use of the spectrum also means you can support more users simultaneously. This increased capacity is particularly beneficial if your business has a large number of employees or needs to handle a high volume of calls at the same time.

Finally, efficient use of the spectrum can enable a range of advanced services, such as high-quality video conferencing, real-time data sharing, and other multimedia services, which can enhance business operations.

Enabling Rich Communication Services (RCS)

VoLTE is a key enabler of RCS, which include features like video calling, file sharing, and instant messaging. As the demand for these services grows, so does the relevance of VoLTE.

Why your business should care RCS offers a richer communication experience compared to traditional SMS or MMS. It supports features like group chats, video and audio messages, file sharing, and read receipts. You can use RCS to send interactive marketing messages to customers. For example, providing images, videos, and documents during a conversation can give customers a more engaging experience.

Customer service representatives can use the same features to provide more personalized, effective service. For example, they can share images or videos to help explain a product or solve a problem, leading to improved customer satisfaction.

Teams can also use RCS internally for more effective project collaboration. The ability to share files, use group chats, and send audio and video messages can make team communication more efficient and productive.

Playing an important role in IoT and M2M communications

VoLTE can play a crucial role in Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications, which are expected to grow exponentially in the coming years. VoLTE can provide reliable, high-quality connectivity for these devices.

Why your business should care If your business relies on IoT and M2M devices for its operations, VoLTE’s reliability and high-quality connectivity ensure consistent and efficient performance. Its ability to facilitate real-time data transfer between devices is also essential for many IoT and M2M applications. Access to data in real time can lead to improved decision-making and operational efficiency.

VoLTE can also support a large number of connected devices, making it suitable for businesses that plan to scale IoT or M2M deployments. And if those devices are battery-powered, VoLTE’s energy-efficient design can lead to cost savings and longer overall device lifetimes.

Simplifying global roaming

VoLTE can simplify global roaming by allowing travelers to make and receive calls on the same IP network, regardless of location.

Why your business should care If your employees travel frequently, VoLTE can lead to improved productivity. Employees can stay connected and continue to work effectively, no matter where they are. Or if you have an international customer base, VoLTE can improve customer service by ensuring clear and reliable communication, regardless of where your customer or customer service representative is located.

VoLTE can also potentially lead to cost savings on international roaming charges. By allowing travelers to make and receive calls on the same IP network, VoLTE can reduce the costs associated with international roaming.

And perhaps most importantly, in today's global business environment, the ability to communicate effectively from anywhere in the world can provide a competitive advantage. Simplifying global roaming is one concrete step you can take to reduce the friction of international business dealings.

A decade on, VoLTE is still the future of mobile communications

Many technological advancements have their moments in the sun and then quickly become old news. We incorporate them into our daily lives, and they end up as background noise. VoLTE isn’t one of those technologies. Instead, it keeps offering possibilities for innovation in communications as we find more need—and even demand—for superior call quality, more efficient network usage, richer communication services, and high-tech IoT and M2M devices.

The transition to VoLTE is about more than keeping up with technology. It's about harnessing its power to drive business growth, improve customer satisfaction, and stay competitive in a rapidly evolving market. With its myriad capabilities, we expect VoLTE will continue to play a pivotal role in shaping our communication experiences, setting new standards for efficiency and convenience.

At Telnyx, we understand the transformative power of VoLTE, which is why we’re working to incorporate VoLTE into our IoT SIM card offerings. Our global coverage, intelligent network switching, pay-as-you-go pricing, and private LTE networks already make our SIM cards a top choice for businesses operating IoT devices. By adding VoLTE capabilities, we’ll also offer enhanced data transfer capacity on a reliable global network for seamless communication no matter where your employees or customers are located.

Contact our team of experts to learn more about how Telnyx’s IoT SIM cards can give your business’s devices reliable global coverage.

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