BARCELONA, Spain - Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) is now poised to take off after a slow start, as more compatible handsets come to market and operators realise the benefits of transferring voice traffic to LTE networks, according to Radisys' senior manager of product marketing, Ray Adensamer.
Speaking to FierceWireless:Europe at the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, Adensamer said the infrastructure software and equipment supply company is beginning to see traction from operators, which are realising that offering all services on all IP LTE networks can free up valuable spectrum resources and enable them to halt declining voice revenues.
"Running one network is obviously more economical…than running two," he noted.
Operators previously saw little point in deploying VoLTE because "3G mobile services, voice services, work quite well", Adensamer explained.
"I turn around and say [to operators voice is] still your biggest business, and you've got to protect that," he added.
Adensamer said a lack of VoLTE handsets has also held the market back, and that battery life concerns on early models was also a concern. However, he said devices are now "round the corner", with a greater number of compatible models on show at MWC.
Radisys "deployed the world's first VoLTE network with Metro PCS, which was acquired by T-Mobile", Adensamer said, and expanded its global footprint through a partnership with software-based networking company Mavenir Systems that was announced at MWC.
The collaboration covers trials of virtualised cloud VoLTE services with European operators including "Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, Tele2", as well as T-Mobile US, Adensamer said.
Despite an increased focus on network virtualisation at MWC, Adensamer said it is important for Radisys to continue investing in hardware.
"The reality is, to get the scalability and reliability and the capacities that are required for what we call these data path applications, still requires hardware. Juniper and Cisco still have hardware for their core routers, so you still need it," he explained, adding that network virtualisation is still in its early stages.
- see Radisys' Mavenir Systems release
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