VoWi-Fi (Jio plans to bring new calling Technology) Details Here


Keeping customers connected without a mobile signal : VoWi-Fi simply stands for voice over (EPC-integrated) Wi-Fi. VoWi-Fi is a complementary technology to VoLTE and utilises IMS technology to provide a packet voice service that is delivered over IP via a Wi-Fi network. Where possible, VoLTE calls may be seamlessly handed over between LTE and Wi-Fi and vice versa. Conversational video is also possible via Wi-Fi (see ViLTE). Over the years, the telecom sector has evolved in ways more than one could imagine, giving us access to improved calling, internet services.

The development still continues, but there have been problems of spotty connections in some, if not all, parts of the country.

Now, this is exactly what Jio is planning to tackle with VoWi-Fi - an all-new calling technology. Here's more.



What is VoWi-Fi?

As the name suggests, VoWi-Fi or voice over Wi-Fi is a technology that delivers voice calling services over IP via a Wi-Fi network.

It would come as a complementary solution to VoLTE, which Jio already uses to let consumers make high-definition voice calls using cellular internet.

With VoWi-Fi, VoLTE calls would be handled over both LTE and Wi-Fi, connecting even without a mobile signal.

Who is VoWi-Fi valuable for?

1. Operators; and

2. Consumers.

What are the benefits of VoWi-Fi?

Both end users and those in the mobile industry will benefit from Voice over Wi-Fi.

Consumers:

1. Can make calls without the need for a mobile signal (e.g. in a remote location or in a property with thick walls);

2. Benefit from security being based on SIM-based authentication as for VoLTE; and

3. Experience better indoor coverage.

Operators:

1. Unlock revenue opportunities;

2. Leverage existing SIM-based security and authentication as for VoLTE;

3. Gain the opportunity to access IMS-based services via Wi-Fi access;

4. Issue a single bill for the user for all IMS-based services across different access types;

5. Ensure ongoing relevance with customers;

6. Gain competitive advantage; and

7. Benefit from voice/video telephony services provided by IMS and the MMTEL application server as for VoLTE/ViLTE.

What is the GSMA doing to help in relation to VoWi-Fi?

We are working with the mobile industry to help operators realise the benefits of, and to effectively adopt, all-IP VoWi-Fi as part of their core services.

VoWi-Fi would be ideal in rural regions

VoWi-Fi works in such a way that people living in rural areas or remote parts of the country would be able to make calls easily, even when they do not get full cellular network on their phones.

Notably, Jio is already testing VoWi-Fi

Reliance Jio, according to a report in TelecomTalk, is already working on a plan to bring VoWi-Fi to life.

The telco has been testing the tech in select parts of the country, including Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, Kerala, and others.

However, as of now, there is no word when the service might actually be rolled out for the public.

Initially, VoWiFi would be limited to Jio itself

The TelecomTalk report notes that VoWi-Fi service would initially come as Jio product but other telcos are also expected to jump on the bandwagon.

Vodafone Idea and Airtel both have confirmed the plan to bring the technology, noting that they have been carrying out tests.

Airtel's Gopal Vittal had even claimed that they are in the advanced stages of the testing phase.

VoWiFi Launch timeline remains unclear

Neither Jio or nor any other telco has given a word on when VoWi-Fi will be available.

However, going by the current tests, a launch sometime in 2020 seems plausible, according to a report in Financial Express.

To note, the folks at TelecomTalk had even seen a screenshot of a test device running Jio's VoWi-Fi; it showed 'Jio WiFi' next to the signal bar.

 

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