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EE UK Launch Enhanced HD Voice Calling on their 4G Network and WiFi

Friday, September 22nd, 2017 (10:50 am) - Score 2,202

Mobile operator EE has today announced that their UK network now supports the new ‘Enhanced HD Voice‘ (EVS) calling technology, which further enhances the sound quality of phone calls when made over the operator’s existing 4G Calling (VoLTE) network or via their WiFi Calling service.

At this point some readers might be forgiven for scratching their heads, after all haven’t we already seen an HD Voice technology go live some years ago? Well yes, but this is better, you see.. it’s more natural sounding, we’re told.

Put another way, EVS applies support for its new codec into the device’s (Smartphone) chipset and software, which is then combined with some improvements to the acoustic design of phones (e.g. ensuring that microphones and speakers are capable of covering an expanded audio frequency range).

Max Taylor, MD of Marketing at EE, said:

“We launch the very latest technologies so that EE customers get the best performance on the latest smartphones. We already have 4G in more places than any other UK operator, and we have the fastest 4G speeds for streaming, downloading and sharing. Now we’re launching Enhanced HD Voice so that calls are of the highest quality and the most reliable they’ve ever been.”

At present EE’s existing 4G Calling service is already available across their network and some 5 million customers are making use of it. However not all Smartphones support the new EVS upgrade, although EE notes that the Apple iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be among the first out of the gate.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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13 Responses
  1. George M says:

    ” However not all Smartphones support the new EVS upgrade, although EE notes that the Apple iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus will be among the first out of the gate.”
    So a marketing ploy to get people to buy the latest iPhone and it only works when you purchase your new iPhone from EE I presume?

    1. spurple says:

      No. It’s the forward march of technology. You roll out the technology now, and in half a decade, everyone will support it, and it’s better for all users.

      It’s sad that it took the advent of internet calling apps like Skype/Whatsapp/Viber to get mobile networks to take voice quality seriously, but it’s a good thing that at least EE is improving the state of the art.

    2. George M says:

      “No it’s the march of technology?”

      But only on 2 phones (extremely expensive ones), no idea if it is only on EE supplied ones as the article gives zero details.
      And there have been multiple attempts over the years to improve voice quality but have been tied to a supplier’s own supplied phones. Even then it is only a small percentage of phones that have the necessary software. So they fail.
      I never buy a phone from my supplier so I miss out on a lot of the unique features such as this. And I’m not worried about it.

    3. spurple says:

      You don’t have to buy a phone from the provider. Example, Wifi Calling is becoming available on more phones. HD Voice is also widely supported https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_smartphones_with_HD_Voice_support

    4. PaulM says:

      That link has nothing to do with Enhanced HD voice, they are 2 different technologies. Those handsets will not support EVS.

      Neither Enhanced HD voice or the prior HD voice are new either. This explains the (cough) differences…
      https://blog.networks.nokia.com/mobile-networks/2015/07/23/thought-hd-voice-special-wait-til-hear-enhanced-voice-services/

      It matters not though because as George has already pointed out its down to Network operator to enable it and a phone to have the capability in the first place.

      Its also all a bunch of rubbish, anyone that thinks any sound that comes out of tiny little speakers in a phone (be them the earpiece or loud speaker) is capable of high quality sound is nothing more that a marketing departments wet dream.

      Recording studio speakers can not even frequency match original input with complete and utter accuracy, so thinking your 1/2 centimetre iplop speaker is going to give anything of real quality is funny.

      Good attempted stunt to get them to sign a few more lemmings up to buying another new iplop though.

    5. spurple says:

      @paulm, of course. I was only giving an example of an older standard that is now pretty widespread.

    6. spurple says:

      @paulm, no idea how your mind works. I don’t listen to music via phone calls, theres spotify for that.

      Better voice quality makes for a less stressful phone conversation and better communication.

      HD Voice has been a great improvement, and any enhancements are welcome.

      I have proper headphones for music.

    7. Ultraspeedy says:

      “@paulm, no idea how your mind works. I don’t listen to music via phone calls, theres spotify for that.”

      I believe his reasoning for mentioning both the earpiece and loud speaker in regards to calls is because
      1. They are both tiny and tinny sounding speakers
      2. One you would use for a traditional way of having a call (IE phone to ear) While the loudspeaker in a phone would be to hear the other person when using the phone for a handsfree call.
      Not sure why you would think he meant listening to music. Though your headphones are to a degree another example of what he was talking about and that is speaker quality. Cheap headphones will not sound as good as expensive ones (in most cases anyway).

      It does not matter what tech and what the phone is capable of audio quality wise if the speakers (either in the phone of any type plugged in externally) are crap and loudspeakers and earpieces in phones are often just that.

  2. Simon says:

    I admit when I call someone on EE with an Iphone (and I have a Sony) I get a HD symbol come up and it’s clear as day.

    1. PaulM says:

      Both phones have to support it and both for HD Voice have to remain connected to 4G otherwise the call will drop.

  3. Dave says:

    Indoors voice would be better…

    1. PaulM says:

      You wont get that with them either as i believe its only been implemented by them to work on 4G for now.

  4. RICHARD WALTON says:

    I think they should concentrate on improving their network. I live in Leeds and calls drop. Goodness knows what the service is like in the countryside.

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