After running tests across the live network of a major US operator, test and measurement company Spirent – in collaboration with analyst firm Signals Research Group (SRG) – concluded that VoLTE was a much better bet in terms of voice quality and call performance than either 3G circuit-switched (CS) voice or Skype.
The benchmark study found VoLTE call quality “exceeded” 3G CS voice and was “measurably higher” than Skype Voice.
VoLTE performance was also seen as “considerably better” than Skype’s when network loading and background applications were running on the mobile phone and transferring data with the network.
The study further found that VoLTE, because it required “substantially fewer network resources” than Skype, had a “meaningfully longer” estimated mobile battery life.
Perhaps less surprisingly, VoLTE had significantly shorter call set-up times than circuit-switched fallback (CSFB).
Spirent and SGR concluded from the study findings that “VoLTE is worth the wait and successfully delivers on the promise of superior quality of experience and efficient use of network resources”.
Testing over a live network is part one of the benchmark study. Part two will take measurements made in the field and confirm them in a tightly-controlled lab environment with Spirent’s testing equipment.
There has been a flurry of VoLTE activity in the US and Asia in past weeks with AT&T, Bouygues Telecom, HKT, NTT Docomo, SingTel and T-Mobile US each declaring that they have either recently launched commercial VoLTE or are on the verge of doing so.
They join South Korea’s three major network operators, and Metro PCS (now part of T-Mobile US), which were first out of the VoLTE traps back in August 2012.