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Mobile high-definition voice services are catching on worldwide, with launches reported on 45 networks in 35 countries, according to the Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA).

Mobile HD Voice uses adaptive multi-rate wideband technology (W-AMR), which was standardized by 3GPP. “The maximum benefits from using HD Voice on a mobile HD-capable network are realized or perceived when both calling and called parties use HD Voice-capable phones. Improvements in call quality are also often observed even when calling a non-HD Voice phone, due to improvements in the acoustic performance and advanced noise,” said GSA.

HD Voice services are available on a variety of networks, including GSM, HSPA and LTE, said the group. HD Voice services are commercially launched in almost 60 percent of European Union member countries, the association added, noting operator investments in mobile HD Voice extend far beyond Europe.

“The number of operators offering commercial HD Voice service has increased by 40 percent in under a year. Initially HD voice service was offered on HSPA networks, followed by GSM. HD voice is now market reality on LTE systems with the first wave of commercial VoLTE service launches announced in South Korea,” said Alan Hadden, GSA president.

In early August, South Korea’s largest operator, SK Telecom, and the third largest, LG U+, launched VoLTE with HD Voice service. Almost all commercial VoLTE launches worldwide are expected to eventually support HD Voice.

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