Kineto adds Wi-Fi-calling services to white-label smartphone app

Kineto Wireless said a new suite of voice services riding on its downloadable Smart Comms application will enable carriers to leverage their voice over LTE (VoLTE) or fixed IMS-based voice networks to offer voice-over-Wi-Fi calling, international VoIP calling, home line calling and second line service.

Kineto took the wraps off its Smart Comms client application in January 2013, saying the app would enable operators to better leverage standard Rich Communications Suite (RCS) technology to enhance their current offerings and deliver new chat, VoIP and video services to compete with offerings from third-party over-the-top (OTT) service providers.

The release of Smart Comms that includes the new features is being tested by a major European operator and other trials will begin this quarter, Kineto said.

One of the app's new voice services, Wi-Fi calling, enables customers to make and receive standard mobile voice calls and SMS over any Wi-Fi network using their regular mobile number. "Mobile operators can turn the hundreds of millions of existing Wi-Fi networks deployed in the world into virtual small cells on their network," Kineto said.

The international VoIP calling option enables operators to provide an alternative to third-party over-the-top (OTT) international calling services. It can be restricted by the operator to Wi-Fi or made available to subscribers on any suitable data connection, including 3G and LTE.

Home line calling is designed for operators with both mobile and fixed networks and lets subscribers make and receive calls on their mobile using their home phone number. As with international VoIP, home line calling can be to Wi-Fi or enabled over 3G and LTE. 

Kineto's second line service operates as an OTT IP-based service and offers, not surprisingly, an additional phone number for calling and messaging. 

Kineto also disclosed the results of a recent online consumer survey that was made to assess the status of mobile voice coverage in residences. The survey revealed that 12 percent of all respondents classified mobile voice coverage within their home as poor to non-existent.

However, many respondents with poor-to-no mobile voice coverage at home were also smartphone owners who have already configured their phone to connect automatically to a home Wi-Fi network. In the United States, 87 percent of respondents with poor-to-no coverage link to home Wi-Fi, while the number was 89 percent in the UK and 84 percent across Asia.

The survey, sponsored by Kineto, was conducted in April 2014 and included more than 2,500 respondents from major North American, South American, Western European and Asian markets.

Kineto announced in February 2014 that another of its products, the Smart Wi-Fi client, is being used by U.S. mobile operator Sprint (NYSE: S) to enable its subscribers to use their voice and messaging services over existing home, office and public Wi-Fi networks. The service also relies upon technology from Taqua, whose virtual mobile core system enables a handset to select between Wi-Fi and cellular using the strongest signal for voice calls as well as messaging.

For more:
- see this Kineto release and this release

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