Apple Job Postings Point Towards Continued Work on Voice Over LTE

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Aug 21, 2014.

  1. macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Several new job listings suggest Apple is continuing to work on building support for Voice Over LTE (VoLTE) into its line of mobile devices. VoLTE is designed to allow carriers to send voice calls over LTE networks, right alongside data. On the consumer end, this results in higher quality voice calls and faster call connection times.

    Subscribers on CDMA networks (Sprint and Verizon) will further benefit from VoLTE, as it allows the simultaneous use of data and voice, something that's not currently possible.

    [​IMG]
    First discovered by LightReading (via Gigaom) job openings at Apple include Cellular Systems Protocol Engineer and Senior Baseband Audio Engineer. The protocol engineer position requires hands-on experience with VoLTE, among other wireless technologies, while the senior position also asks for experience with the VoLTE specification. Several additional positions also ask for experience with Session Initiation Protocol, which is essential for creating a connection between devices and LTE networks.
    VoLTE is in the early stages of a rollout, with a full implementation hinging on support from both carriers and device makers. In the U.S., carriers have already begun exploring and investing in VoLTE technology. Earlier this year, Verizon Wireless announced plans to roll out Voice Over LTE in 2014, promising "an HD Voice experience."

    AT&T and T-Mobile have also announced support for VoLTE on a limited number of devices and in a limited number of markets, also promising higher quality calls. VoLTE is also picking up steam in other countries around the world, with several global carriers now offering support for the technology.

    While Apple is posting new job listings related to VoLTE, it is likely the company has been working on the technology for some time, in response to a carrier shift towards VoLTE. Previous reports from 9to5Mac have suggested that Apple may enable support for VoLTE alongside the launch of iOS 8, with support built into the iPhone 6.

    Because the Qualcomm LTE chips used in Apple devices since the iPhone 5 natively support voice, it is also possible that existing devices, in addition to the iPhone 6, will be able to offer support for VoLTE following a software update. It does, however, remain unclear if this is a feature that will roll out immediately with the launch of iOS 8 or in a future iOS 8 update in late 2014 or early 2015.

    Article Link: Apple Job Postings Point Towards Continued Work on Voice Over LTE
     
  2. macrumors 68000

    Reason077

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    It's kind of amazing that there are still actually phone networks in the world that can't do simultaneous voice and data. This isn't the 1990s!
     
  3. macrumors regular

    DJsteveSD

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    doesnt that eat up your data (for those not on unlimited plans)?
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    yeah

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    Great, but that means more work for the carriers in getting LTE into more places and reaching equivalent coverage to older 2G networks. :p
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

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    It eats data but its not counted. Thats how the carrier would handle there calls. Everyone will be doing VoLTE as there LTE networks expand.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

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    But that's not what this is? This is using a data signal to make voice calls; not use a CDMA/GSM network for voice and LTE for data, but rather LTE for both (and potentially making phones more universal if they support all LTE bands???)
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

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    VoLTE is a big deal. Maybe not right now, but in a few years it is part of a major transition.

    Eventually our phones will have 1 cellular radio, just for Data, and all device communication will travel over it. What this will mean is that you will no longer pay for "minutes" you'll simply pay for data. With that, the plans you subscribe to will be simpler and will be balanced out a little so as to allot more data/per dollar.

    Voice will be high quality (think of FaceTime audio as it is now), plans will be simpler, and devices will have less 1 less radio to accommodate.

    ----------

    Going forward, we'll see if its "counted" or not. Like i mention above, one day you won't pay for minutes, just data, and all of the devices data consumption will likely count.
     
  8. macrumors 6502a

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    Makes sense since more carriers are beginning to implement this/planning to implement it within the next year.
     
  9. macrumors regular

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    And yet I doubt my overall bill will go down.
     
  10. macrumors regular

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    How do you know this? How do you know that VoLTE won't count towards data?
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

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    One would hope the carrier is able to tell the difference between voice call data and the data usage we expect to be billed (deducted) for.
     
  12. macrumors 65816

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    VoLTE will not be the death of data. LTE is a technology that is mainly used now for data. This will not be the first time carriers have moved their calling to a newer technology.
     
  13. macrumors 65816

    Locoboof

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    Apple Job Postings Point Towards Continued Work on Voice Over LTE

    If things eventually go this way I could see EVERY carrier abolishing unlimited plans,grandfathered or not. I'm one of the lucky few that still has a grandfathered unlimited plan with AT&T.
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

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    What kind of plant? Did they give it to you free with your phone? Would be cool if it grew fruit or vegetables. Would be nice having unlimited plants.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    Locoboof

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    That's funny! Lol. Oops....it's been corrected.
     
  16. Waxhead138, Aug 21, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2014

    macrumors regular

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    Pretty Good Bet

    Pretty good bet it won't. Looking over cellcos habits over the years, they normally don't reverse course on an unlimited offering. now BEFORE I start getting flamed because of the unlimited data throttling / ceasing of offering, the difference is that was an added elective feature, where as unlimited voice is *virtually* standard now, after many many years of milking that cash cow.

    There's never a gaurantee that they couldn't reverse course, but looking at long term trends in that industry, it's highly unlikely, simply becuase they spent years building the strategy that we are starting to see unfold now / next 5 years.

    That all being said.....it won't be a utopia under VoLTE. There will be a magical new offering based on that technology, that likely will be offered unlimited for a year or three, then changed...just like we just got done with w/ unlim data. I don't speculate what that offering would be, but it will happen.

    Also to take note of....any of you out there that have family a few years down the line that still maintain a perfecting functioning albeit obselete strictly 3G device, expect forced upgrade / replacement. This is a repeat on a much smaller scale of analog equipment that was force phased out around 2005 or so....although the circumstances were a hair different with the analog force out. By that time it won't hit too many people though, I'm figuring 5 years down the line.

    *Some clarity: If they recognize voice as data in the future, highly unlikely it would count toward a cap or that the consumer would be charged. It would be like after all these years going back and them saying "Oh, hey.....caller ID is now $3.00 a month per line after you've had it free since roughly 1998."
     
  17. macrumors 603

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    This would only be possible if carriers support it...

    What about T-Mobile, Vodafone ?

    So, this is more like VoIP, but from the carriers end ?

    In fact, i remember the 1990's when WAP was only thing.. That crappy text based limited graphics thing on back & white dumb phones.

    But its only natural that mobile carriers wanna make more money in this day and age, and it will be big bucks for them.... No wonder why they agreed to this.
     
  18. macrumors 68030

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    VoLTE in T-Mobile is very nice to be sure, but it is frustrating that it's not interoperable. In other words, calls between different carriers, even when both parties support VoLTE, will be plain old voice calls.
     
  19. macrumors 6502

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    Carriers will support it. The reason is that LTE is far more spectrum efficient than previous technologies. Eventually, they will be able to retire previous technologies such as GSM, CDMA and UTMS and convert that spectrum over to LTE, where they get much more bang for the buck (in terms of the amount of data that can be moved over a given quantity of spectrum).

    Additionally, having voice come over IP will allow them to exchange VoIP traffic with other carriers via peering agreements (essentially free on a marginal basis) rather than routing over the PSTN, where they incur connection costs. This is direction cable companies have taken with their voice product, as well as next generation telco offerings (for instance, my Verizon FiOS landline is VoIP for this reason, despite being offered by a traditional telco).
     
  20. macrumors 68040

    KdParker

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    More likely if will go up for the heavy phone users. If they are throttling 'heavy' users already anyone that has one of those unlimited talk plans will lose that for sure and have to pay a per minute charge.

    The fact that this is being so widely accepted by the carriers is a sure sign that it will help their bottom line.
     
  21. macrumors 6502a

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    Because its counted as minutes on the carrier end as a regular phone call. If you have unlimited calling minutes then you would have unlimited VoLTE data.

    Its not data as in you browsing a website. If its going to be counted then its going to be counted towards your minutes of voice calling.
     
  22. macrumors 6502

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    That will change as time goes on. Already telcos are setting up VoIP peering points, where traffic is exchanged in IP form. As the technology becomes more widespread, higher level features such as 'HD Voice' will be implemented and supported between carriers.
     
  23. macrumors regular

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    Can you say 6S feature?
     
  24. macrumors 6502

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    I highly doubt they will count it as data. Too confusing for end consumers. They will keep calls as voice minutes regardless of the technology that is carrying the conversation. The benefits for the carriers are more on the back-end/resource utilization, as detailed in my above post.
     
  25. macrumors regular

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    Initiated by Carriers

    I could be mistaken, but I'm pretty sure the carriers started this simply to get better usage of spectrum (there's only so much of it to get) and the manufacturers didn't have much choice but to sign on, not vice versa.

    Not defending the carriers...just saying the hardware folks didn't approach them with the idea.
     

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