T-Mobile International is joining forces with major handset and equipment vendors to promote a new approach to delivering voice over Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology. The group, called Voice over LTE via Generic Access Form or VoLGA Forum, is expected to launch Monday and aims to specify and advocate an approach for extending traditional GSM and UMTS circuit-switched services over all-IP LTE access networks.
The reasoning behind this is to provide a consistent set of voice, SMS and other circuit-switched services as customers transition among GSM, UMTS and LTE access networks. VoLGA technology is based on the existing 3GPP General Access Network (GAN) standard. The VoLGA forum says the technology offers a low-cost, low risk approach for bringing existing revenue-generating services like voice and SMS to LTE.
To promote the widespread adoption of VoLGA technology, VoLGA Forum participants are developing a set of open specifications. Some of the wireless industry's biggest vendors are founding members of the group, including Alcatel-Lucent, Ericsson, Huawei, LG Electronics, Motorola, Samsung, Starent and ZTE. The VoLGA approach will compete with IMS and VoIP to provide possible circuit-switched-like services.
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