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Verizon VoLTE Launch Details: Advanced Calling 1.0, Devices, Video Call Billing, and More

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This morning, Verizon announced that it would launch VoLTE and HD Voice nationwide within the coming weeks. They also pinged us later in the day with clarification on how HD Voice calls would be treated compared to regular voice calls (in short: the same). As the evening has progressed, we have continued to learn additional details about Big Red’s full VoLTE launch, including the two devices that will be able to take advantage out of the gate, specifics on Advanced Calling 1.0, how both Video and HD Voice calls are billed, and what happens when a customer hands-off from WiFi to LTE. 

Before we get into the specifics, below is a carefully crafted chart that compares Verizon’s VoLTE and HD Voice service to the other major players in the game, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. As you can see, the big sell here for Big Red is video calling as a part of the service, something none of the others are currently offering.

verizon volte vs sprint tmo att

With that out of the way, let’s talk details.

Advanced Calling 1.0

Verizon is using the name Advanced Calling 1.0 to describe the package of HD Voice and Video Calling. From what I can tell, a customer will need to add Advanced Calling 1.0 to their service in order to place either type of call, assuming they have a compatible device. That may require them to update their phone as well. What I do not know yet, is if Verizon plans to charge a fee for this add-on or if it will be free of charge. I do know that customers will be able to find self-serve options for adding Advanced Calling 1.0 in their account through My Verizon or they can talk to a Verizon rep.

Once Advanced Calling 1.0 has been activated on your device, you will find an option for “VoLTE Call” under Settings>Mobile Networks on your phone. Toggling this on or off turns Advanced Calling 1.0 on or off.

Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 8.53.25 PM

Verizon will update this Advanced Calling 1.0 page as we get closer to launch. You will be able to visit that to get started.

Devices

According to information passed along to us, Verizon will have two devices ready for VoLTE go-live, the Samsung Galaxy S5 and LG G2. There are all sorts of other devices that will be updated over time to work with VoLTE and HD Voice, but those are the first.

On a related note, there are accessories like wired or Bluetooth headsets that will work with HD Voice calls, but they need to specifically say that they support it.

Billing

As we mentioned earlier in the day, HD Voice calls are treated just like traditional calls. If you participate in an HD Voice call, it will count against your minute bucket, unless you have unlimited talk through your plan. No data charges apply when placing an HD Voice call.

As for video calls, things are much different. When you place a video call over VoLTE, the audio portion is actually billed as a traditional voice call, but the video portion is billed as data. According to Verizon, a user could consume 6-8MB of data per minute during a video call. In other words, if you were on a video call for around two hours, it could use up to 1GB of data.

Video calls placed over WiFi do not count against your data plan.

Placing Calls (HD Voice and Video)

With Advanced Calling 1.0 active on a VoLTE-ready device, placing a call is as simple as placing a traditional call. A customer would place a call through a contact, recent call, or dialer, just like they always have. The only difference is that the call quality should be much, much better, hence the name “HD Voice.”

If you would like to place a video call over LTE, Advanced Calling 1.0 will automatically create a group in your contacts with others who have video calling capabilities. So instead of trying to figure out who you can video chat with over LTE, Verizon will attempt to bundle them in a group.

Other Notes:

  • If you are on an HD Voice call (or Video Call through Advanced Calling 1.0) and leave a 4G LTE area, you will drop the call. According to Verizon, there is no mid-call hand-off to CDMA.
  • Video Calls can be handed off to WiFi and back to LTE. With a Video Call taking place over WiFi, customers should see a special icon indicating as much.

If you have any questions about HD Voice or VoLTE, be sure to drop them in the comments.

Cheers O!
  • Melissa

    Hd voice will be available september 19th on Verizon. Amazing, isnt that the same day the crapple iphone 6 comes out? Lol.

  • Jason Brown

    what happens down the line when all phones become LTE only and i dont have LTE where i live? does that mean i cannot make or receive calls at home?

  • notechnomo

    so, they bill you twice for a video call?

    what kind of BS is this?! VZW can suck a fat one! i saved $50 switching to tmobile. and skype doesnt use my call minutes.

  • bigintexas

    So will Verizon eliminate competition by blocking skype, hangouts, etc like it does with Google Wallet?

  • dsignori

    So both parties must be on LTE. Down the road in 5 or 6 years when they go all LTE, and do away with 1X calling and 3G, and have only VOLTE .. How will we call landlines? Will the requirement for both parties to be on LTE be gone by then?

  • deskjob

    “Video calls placed over WiFi do not count against your data plan.”

    I wonder if Verizon will still eat up your minutes (for those of us without unlimited talk) on wifi video calls? Technically from their classification, Volte minutes are still minutes. However we all know it’s data, so on wifi, Volte voice calls I am guessing won’t be taxing Verizon’s network at all.

    If they do charge minutes for this… I think it’s literally stealing money from the customers.

  • MacNificent

    So what if you make calls through Google Voice?
    Will I still be able to get the HD call quality

  • Eclipse

    Ya know, everytime I see a Verizon article and read I am reminded how crappy that company actually is. So glad they don’t get my money any more.

  • Cael

    LBR, Verizon is not going to update too many old devices in an attempt to force people to upgrade. I would not be surprised if the G2 is the only 2013 phone updated for it.

    • AnonGuy

      All the VoLTE things are already on the Note 3. They were put there in the 4.4.2 update. After the update, the VoLTE Configuration utility was showing up in the App Drawer and I opened it and looked around before I factory reset the device (which I always do after a major update). I think the Galaxy S4 receive similar components for configuring VoLTE on the phone, so they clearly plan to add that capability to those devices otherwise they would not have wasted the development time they’ve already put into them… All they will need is an update to add in the client components/features (Video Calling, Dialer integration, expose the option to enable it, etc.).
      I’d reckon most phones released in 2013 will get the update, and perhaps even more than that.

  • Guest

    No Verizon, will wait for Advanced Calling 2.0:

    1. No hand-off between LTE and 1x.

    2. both parties have to be on LTE

    3. ” it will count against your minute bucket, unless you have unlimited talk through your plan” – and I have UDP and don’t want call data to add to my data considering the possibility of going into top 5% bracket and throttling.

  • 213ninja

    @Droid-Life can you confirm whether unlimited data users are capable of adding this Advanced Calling 1.0 feature without losing UDP? if i missed it, my bad.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      That we do not know, but it should be available. I don’t think you plan has anything to do with adding this feature.

      • flosserelli

        Do not underestimate Verizon’s willingness and creative ability to penalize UD users.

        • 213ninja

          my assumption was that i’d be penalized…

          • flosserelli

            Yes, and you should assume that.
            My comment was really directed at Kellen.

      • 213ninja

        Ok, thanks for getting back to me sir.

  • Jwhap

    Awesome. What I read here, currently, most calls on your note 3 will sound garbled, now with HD voice you will hear your phone calls crystal clear, however, you will drop more calls.

  • Suicide_Note

    No mid-call handoff is just terrible, and possibly charging people extra to use VoLTE is ridiculous, though not at all surprising. This is Verizon, after all.

  • bionicwaffle

    Battery life! Anyone have stats? Last I heard VoLTE calls take a lot more battery power than plain old non-VoLTE calls. Do you really want to cut your talk time in half or down to 1/3 of what it was just for a little better call quality? With most of my calls, quality isn’t a problem at all and consider so few, if any, of my friends would have this it doesn’t seem to make much sense – unless you don’t care about battery life.

  • CJ SMOOVE

    CAn I just get calling over Wi-Fi…since I can barely with Kit Kat……………..

  • dlegendary0ne

    Why can’t they just make VoLTE a data feature and just call it a day? #confused

    • Dominick White

      Cause not many people on Verizon have unlimited data, and this way it can be shown has a positive feature instead of a negative one

  • Cory S

    Is Video Calling a proprietary carrier technology, or will it be compatible with other services when they roll video calling out? If it is locked to each carriers users then this is DoA.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      Locked to each carrier. You can’t place HD Voice calls between different carrier phones.

      • Cory S

        That’s like if you could only text or call someone on the same carrier. it’s retarded.

        • flosserelli

          One day there will be a standard protocol for HD voice between carriers…but VZW will probably never adopt it.

          • AnonGuy

            It’s locked to each carrier currently because they aren’t all implementing RCS at the same rate. Verizon is the first major carrier to implement the Video Calling in the USA, built into the devices this way. When other carriers implement RCS, it should not be hard to interop. The whole point of RCS is to standardize this across carriers as base device capabilities. It covers Presence, IM and Group Chat, VoIP and Video Calling, File Sharing, etc.

            .

            Basically, RCS is an industry wide effort to make (using this as an example) FaceTime Audio, FaceTime, and iMessage brand/platform/carrier agnostic features across all devices.

            .

            Read about it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rich_Communication_Services (Also check sites in the references, they have their own website where you can get all the 1st party information).

            .
            The problem with it, which is a problem with all “standards” is that it’s taking too damn long to get up and running. Similar to WebRTC, Isis (more a collaboration than a standard, but similar issue), and others.
            .
            To be frank, I’d have exected them to implement the IM/Group Chat features before the Video Calling, but I guess capitalizing on their ability to generate more revenue from data caps is more important to them.

      • W. Paul Schenck

        Why are we putting up with this? Who wants to only be able to call people on their same network?

  • http://www.twitter.com/russcorwin2 Russ Corwin

    The G2? Why not G3?

    • downtownjeff

      Exactly.

    • Jigga What

      The G2 has been in testing with volte for awhile now. No worries. It’ll be available to the other devices soon.

  • IgotGAME

    No thanks Verizon…

    While not HD, Google Hangouts works just fine for me when needed and uses no minutes. I am also on unlimited data so that’s not a worry.

  • EdLessard

    So they have the capacity on their data network to add all these voice calls, but not for the top 5% of data users at full speed. Their arguments against the FCC inquiry are getting weaker by the day.

    • flosserelli

      HD voice does not use much more bandwidth than regular calls. But yeah video calls are a totally different matter. I wouldn’t be surprised if VZW somehow gimps video calling for people with UD.

      • EdLessard

        Though individual calls don’t, that’s still all data that wasn’t using LTE before? I’m just trying to say that it’s hogwash that they have bandwidth problems, and they should be honest about the throttling of high data users.

        • flosserelli

          VZW has already stated they will bill VoLTE as minutes, not data, even though voice calls are still using LTE. Yes, it’s a contradiction, but if VZW billed VoLTE as data, everyone that actually used their phone to talk would run into their data cap in no time.

          But i agree with your point about having bandwidth for VoLTE and videocalls, but throttling UD users. It’s complete BS, but that is VZW for ya.

      • HarvesterX

        No because the audio portion still counts as minutes as unlimited data users only have 400 minutes (like myself) or 1500 minutes. Well the majority…there might be some ULD users with a different plan but those are the main two.

  • yummy

    Smell the carrot, taste the stick

    • Jonathan Williams

      That’s what she said.

  • Masta Marc

    Simultaneous voice and data finally?

    • jruasap

      That already works on Verizon if you’re using LTE. A very small number of phones support simultaneous voice & data on 3G as well (mostly HTC phones like the Thunderbolt and Rezound).

      • Masta Marc

        Not the iphone. On LTE. I wonder will this volte enable it for all devices

  • BCoils

    99.9% of my phone use is not for calls so if i was on verizon this wouldn’t affect me.

  • Timothy Anderson

    Verizon is late to the party. As far as video … only works on a couple of devices, they will probably charge for it, and who cares, hangouts is probably much better especially for conferencing and sharing docs.

  • yankeesusa

    This no handoff to cdma really sucks. There are still plenty of areas that have cdma jumping in and out especially indoors. There are going to be a lot of mad people when they start dropping calls like crazy. One great thing is that verizon lte footprint is the best in the market and my brother in law has LTE almost everywhere he goes, at least till he goes into some buildings. I envy him for that. But I still love my tmobile data speed which beats his every time. Either way verizon is really stepping it up. If only they would at lest match att’s data plans.

  • Paul Christopher

    No love for the note 3 at launch. Such a shame

    • hkklife

      Agreed. Probably hoping that by dragging their feet on a Note 3 update it will somehow convince people to pony up for a Note 4 when it drops in October.

  • jamaall

    So do both parties have to be on LTE in order for an advanced call to take place?

    • flosserelli

      Both must be on either LTE or WiFi.

      • jamaall

        soooooo we’ll rarely every use this unless both people are in the city? If not, one of the two lines are bound to change to 3G.

        • flosserelli

          Essentially, yes.

        • Dominick White

          Have lte all upstate ny here with Verizon even in one stop light towns

  • Adam Marr

    No handoff is a killer. Despite working in a metro area and living in a fairly well populated suburb, I am rarely on a stable 4G connection. Will HD Voice work over wifi, like the video?

  • Brian Walz

    Isn’t VoLTE going to enable Verizon users to make a call and use data at the same time?

    • Adam Marr

      You already can. I don’t know of any technical reason why this would stop that, to the device, its probably just another data packet, like any other.

      • HarvesterX

        Yeah but only because calls are handled on the CDMA radio and LTE with the LTE radio

        If you were on 3G and trying to simultaneously use both it doesn’t work (well it didn’t used to at least ..I guess it could have changed).

        But if you’re on a LTE call then I “think” you can still access your LTE for data at the same time, though I might be wrong about this last part

        • Adam Marr

          I think it depends on the phone. The iPhone never could, but most newer phones can do simul. on 4G, and some phones can do simul on 3G (GS3 I think can for instance), so it really just depends on how the handset radios are configured I guess. But yeah, LTE is all just data, so just like you can d/l a file and surf the internet at the same time, there is no reason VoLTE would prevent normal concurrent data usage.

  • flosserelli

    “If you are on an HD Voice call (or Video Call through Advanced Calling 1.0) and leave a 4G LTE area, you will drop the call. According to Verizon, there is no mid-call hand-off to CDMA.”

    I hope VZW customer service reps are prepared to handle the deluge of customer complaints about dropped calls when this goes live. Their vaulted coverage & service reputation is about to take a nosedive.

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      It is opt-in at both the account and device level, at least for now. All the rep has to do is tell them to turn it off if it is not stable for them. If they aren’t paying a separate fee for it, not much the user can complain about, even though they will.

      • flosserelli

        True, but do you really think the average person who never tinkers with settings (the vast majority of customers) will know how to disable the feature on their phone? Nope. Hence, a call to customer service.

        • Robert Macri

          Its disabled by default

          • flosserelli

            Ah ok. I assumed it was enabled by default.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          By that same token, they never would have enabled it in the first place. So no problem.

      • http://profiles.google.com/gallimichael Michael G. Galli

        In the real world, we call this “Not ready / broken / janky / half ass”. Bottom line is this: VZW wants to upgrade their old as molasses network via software, not hardware, as that would cost those fuckers some actual money.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          VZW isn’t trying to upgrade their old network. They are trying as hard as they can to get rid of it as quickly as possible. This software upgrade is actually pretty expensive, just not as expensive as replacing every CDMA radio they currently have deployed. I did a little cursory digging but couldn’t really find any evidence of a carrier using CDMA femtocells to successfully deploy IMS, and further using SRVCC to reliably handoff between CDMA and VoLTE. I know that it works in theory, but I haven’t seen any studies made at-scale. In which case, Verizon has very little incentive to upgrade their CDMA equipment; it will be decommissioned within 3-5 years as it is, so spot-repairs should be sufficient to hold up as they solidify the IMS cross-carrier work and push VoLTE-capable devices to their customers. During that time, Verizon will undoubtedly spend their money working to further strengthen their LTE network and expand LTE-A (nominally XLTE) coverage. Makes sense to me, at least.

    • Suicide_Note

      *vaunted

    • Nate Opgenorth

      Everyone assumes that just because VoLTE has no fall back network its going to be unreliable. Consider this: 1xRTT Voice has no fall back network and its reliable. Obviously there is more to it than that but the key thing to consider is that these are two different networks in the eyes of Verizon….at least going into the future. Once VoLTE is 99% common place then Verizon will use all that 1900 AND 850 for LTE as well…

  • Michael Luscher

    Well that’s gonna suck. No call handoff, especially here on Staten Island where coverage is piss poor to day the least.

    • Mike Palomba

      Switch to T-Mobile. I live on Staten Island and have them and its great

  • Shadowstare

    Unless its free, they can keep that HD voice. At work, ever since they added AWS, I drop from LTE to 3g all the time. So if there’s no handoff, I’m stick with regular calling.

  • B T

    So out of country with Wi-Fi access, we’ll be able to make calls natively?

    • CapnShiner

      That will probably be limited by IP address. There may eventually be some kind of roaming option. I doubt they would let people bypass carrier fees so easily.

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      No, this is not wifi calling. That is a completely different system. All this does is move the voice calls from the 1xRTT frequency band to the LTE frequency band, as far as the end user is concerned anyway.

      • B T

        Ok. I had to read back over the article. So when it talked about wifi handoff, was it only referring to video calls?

        • flosserelli

          Yes, that is correct. But HD voice calls initiated over VoLTE will be dropped if you move into a non-LTE area, which will be a potential problem for travelers.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          You got it. I think if they actually had wifi calling setup, it would swap the voice data as well, but without that system things probably just don’t work, so they just keep the LTE call going and work through any video/audio sync/delivery issues on their servers.

          • B T

            Yeah, better to keep it all on their server side. If a router and another ISP came into the picture, then that brings heaps of other factors for support to work through a customer’s problem. It would be cool for people who travel, though. Maybe one day. If I’m not mistaken, isn’t there at least one US carrier who does have something like this implemented? It might even be an additional module that connects to your router.

          • Justtyn Hutcheson

            Wifi calling does exist and is an industry standard; both Sprint and T-Mobile support it in the US (and abroad, of course; wifi is wifi). It more has to do with how Verizon’s routing system is currently setup to handle phone calls. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them implement wifi calling eventually, they just haven’t yet, and haven’t said anything for or against implementing it.

  • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

    I don’t get what all the hoopla is about. Apps like Skype and Viber have had some or all of this capability for years. Is it just the marketing and native simplicity that has everyone excited?

    • CapnShiner

      I think it’s the simplicity and the fact that it leads to the death of CDMA and all the inefficiencies inherit in running a network with LTE and CDMA supported. All the spectrum used for CDMA will become available to use for LTE, thus improving coverage.

      • Mathiuz De Jesús

        Then explain how Sprint handles HD voice calls both on LTE and CDMA WITHOUT the need for VoLTE… Not a limitation of CDMA, but a carrier limitation as Verizon is way behind implementing current Qualcomm CDMA standards 3.x and higher. Even regional CDMA networks are more in line with Sprint and Qualcomm.

        • yankeesusa

          That is a good point. But currently with their spark network there is no talk and data at the same time. It is not capable. So in that sense verizon is ahead.

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            That is only temporarily, as eventually Spark radios will be cheaper to make and simultaneous talk and surf will return. However, I agree it should have been implemented from the start.

            I was about to get the M8, but ended up getting the M7 as it is capable of doing data and voice at the same time when it uses LTE for data (and is very helpful).

          • yankeesusa

            Good to know. Data and voice is very helpful. My wife has the g3 on sprint and she gets mad when she’s on a call and needs to check something and can’t do it while my tmobile g3 can. It’s just it doesn’t look like sprint will be updating this feature in spark anytime soon. I like sprint coverage as I never have any dropped calls and can go on trips with great coverage, it’s just their data speed is so hit and miss. I still haven’t gotten anything over 12mpbs on the sprint phone. even in orlando where supposedly spark is active.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          The calls all go through CDMA on Sprint, never over LTE. To the end user, that doesn’t really matter, as all of Sprint’s LTE has a CDMA network under it.
          Verizon has implemented a standards-compliant VoLTE system. It is not compatible with CDMA, and Verizon’s current call system is based on their 1xRTT network, which is *really* not compatible. Hence, no handoff can occur between the two systems, as they work in fundamentally different and completely incompatible ways.

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            Actually, it does use both if devices at both ends have the capability. In 3G areas, CDMA is used, while on 4G LTE areas, both are used as a way to keep the call going.

          • milanyc

            Absolutely not. On Sprint’s network every call is handled using 1X. Absolutely no voice over their LTE network, unless you use Skype or similar over the top solutions.

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            It can be made backwards compatible, if Verizon implements current Qualcomm CDMA standards on their 3G EVDO side of things (anything from 3.x and later), which in Verizon’s case it will need to upgrade their CDMA infrastructure (they can say they will decomission their CDMA network, but what would be their backup network if their VoLTE network goes down?). That is how Sprint, and several regional CDMA networks are offering HD calling. It does use LTE data where is available, but it also can be done in an area where the network has been upgraded but has not launched LTE service.

            The only downfall is where you are out of the reach of 3G data, which then the calls goes back into the old way. At least locally, most 1x and deadzones have been drastically reduced, and once SMR 800MHz is used locally will make them almost non exsistant.

          • Justtyn Hutcheson

            Oh, they use LTE? That sounds like it would be news to their Chief Network Officer, who stated “that Sprint’s CDMA network will continue to carry its voice calling traffic” (source: http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/sprints-network-chief-isnt-rushing-deploy-volte/2014-03-25). Just because your device shows that you are “connected” to an LTE network while you are on a call, does not mean that it is using the LTE frequency bands to transmit and receive the call data.

            Their HD Voice does, indeed, use Qualcomm’s proprietary CDMA network capabilities and audio codecs to implement HD Voice. Neither of those proprietary offerings are compliant with VoLTE standards, which uses a different routing system and audio codec. Simply put, once the device initiates a call in one mode (CDMA or VoLTE), it is not feasible to switch to the other method. While it would technically be possible to run both concurrently if the device has multiple transceivers (aka SVDO), the power requirements would be insanely high compared to either stream on its own, severely reducing talk time for little tangible benefit.

            As for Verizon, they decided long ago to go all-in on LTE over updating their CDMA, and that strategy seems to have served them well. By the time they decommission any specific CDMA equipment, they will already have equivalent LTE coverage strength, or the conversion from CDMA to LTE-A will provide the coverage they were lacking. When your LTE or LTE-A network is equivalent to your CDMA network in both strength and size, why do you need a CDMA network to “fallback” on?

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            Because technology brings equipment which can and will break down for x and y reasons. There are carriers in Europe going the way Verizon wants to go, and by not having backup plans in terms of a main network failure. The FCC is demanding to keep and upgrade current infrastructure in order to allow VoLTE for any carrier, whether is a GSM or CDMA carrier.

            I want you to also explain how is Verizon is going to provide HD Voice in markets where they do not have their own network, and in markets where Verizon roams (ie, Puerto Rico, USVI). Your assumption of not using LTE data for HD Voice in markets where is available is not proven, unless Verizon does not want to make necessary upgrades to their aging CDMA hardware on each tower (which needs replacement as is not compatible to Qualcomm CDMA firmware 3.X or later). Sprint, and almost every regional CDMA network are making the upgrades needed.

            By the way, Sprint does have plans to reduce using CDMA once VoLTE is deployed (and yes, is in planning stage and should not take too long to do nationwide, as long as every market has been rebuild).

          • milanyc

            Sprint’s LTE needs to at least match (or exceed) their 1x coverage before they can deliver any meaningful VoLTE user experience in urban markets (Top 100).
            Currently, Sprint’s LTE grid is simply not dense enough for VoLTE, and considering that there isn’t a proper handoff mechanism that could handle VoLTE to CDMA call continuity, the amount of drop calls would expose every weakness of Sprint’s thin LTE layer.

            Sprint knows this, and they’re simply not interested at the moment.

        • milanyc

          Sprint doesn’t “handle” calls on LTE. Sprint calls are over 1x network.

      • yankeesusa

        That would be nice if they started using all the cdma spectrum to improve their LTE. If they do that and they match the data plans from att I think they would take over even more. That is the only thing keeping me away from verizon.

  • Gary Graf

    Is the rumored Motorola bluetooth headset going to support HD voice? I guess we shall see in September.

    • yankeesusa

      I think it is. The motorola s type headset always has the best features.

    • creator78

      Anything higher than the lg tone + so the plus ultra and the infinim will do hd audio

  • Montrale Hammonds

    I only want to hear two things out of this 1. Simultaneous voice & data has come back to the iPhone (seriously no way would I upgrade my 4 to a 5 to lose that) 2. Nexus device on Verizon!! I need these to come to fruition so I can chose between those, the G3 and the Note 4.

    • chris

      A nexus device is pointless on vz due to their quality control. You are always 1 to 2 (or more) updates behind thus negating the nexus experience.

      • jesse542

        That is true, but it is a Nexus, which means custom ROMs based on the latest version of Android.

      • yankeesusa

        Who is 1 or 2 updates behind? Verizon or the nexus phone? I don’t think the nexus phone will be behind since all nexus phones receive updates at the same time, in waves but at the same period. Google will never allow another galaxy nexus debacle like last time.

    • Josh

      It’s not VZW’s fault Apple didn’t use a chipset that could handle both networks simultaneously. Also, I’m hoping for an LTE only Nexus; it’s up to the manufacturers, now, to force each carriers’ hands so the FCC can dismantle their anti-competitiveness.

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      The Nexus device is unlikely on Verizon. At this time, it still doesn’t make sense for a phone, as the only way to make calls would be through VoLTE on Band 13 (they don’t have to let anyone on their Band 4 they don’t want on there, including unlocked devices), which would only connect to people who have also activated VoLTE on both their account and their device, and nobody outside of Verizon, which still uses the legacy 1xRTT system for calls. It would also be completely unable to use SMS/MMS via Verizon’s systems.
      True, that can all be mitigated via GVoice or similar systems, but in the end the restrictions would likely be more frustrating than simply dealing with a non-Nexus device.

    • Montrale Hammonds

      Guess who was right this guy was!!!! Minus the Nexus so far.

    • Montrale Hammonds

      Look who was 2/2 I should probably play the lottery at this point lol.

  • Paul

    If you’re on grandfathered unlimited, is Verizon forcing you to go to a “compatible” plan in order to use this? They’ve done that before.

    • DC_Guy

      If that’s the case I wouldn’t care about NOT using it.

      • pickles

        I’m with you. Unlimited data isn’t as importand as “HD” voice and I already have video calling with cross platform/carrier apps.

        • AnonGuy

          If you never use over 2-3 GB of data, and still use your phone as a phone, then HD Voice is more important than Unlimited Data.
          Also, it’s pretty ignorant to compared a Carrier-wide, platform agnostic Video Chat implementation that “just works” to a random 3rd party app/service that may or may not be locked to a specific platform and may or may not require the people you know to install an app to access and probably create an account to use.
          Not to mention, VoLTE sounds better than almost any VoIP implementation on the market right now.

    • Big Daddy

      Fuk unlimited data since you might have to update phone. Ha.

      • mcdonsco

        huh?

      • 213ninja

        can you elaborate on this?

      • Jonathan Williams

        Ummm….

      • tomn1ce

        Why would I have to update my phone to get VoLTE on my Note 3 that I just bought back in Dec and kept my unlimited data plan. This phone should be good for another year or two. I’m pretty sure this one would be one of the devices that will be updated to take advantage of VoLTE.

    • kashtrey

      I’d be willing to be that it will be a free “Feature” on share plans and limited data but an unreasonably priced “option” on unlimited or existing contracts.

      • Justtyn Hutcheson

        They can’t really make it a “feature” to add to an unlimited line, because any changes to an unlimited line kick you off unlimited because it is “no longer compatible with [their] billing system”. I doubt they will restrict it that harshly though, given that they want people using HD Voice and off CDMA than they want people off unlimited.

        That said, they may restrict video calls for unlimited, with no recourse for them to add it.

        • kashtrey

          You can make certain changes to your features such as changing how many texts you get on unlimited plans, at least you could a while back. I’m not sure if that’s still true though.

    • yankeesusa

      That’s a great question. I would not be surprised if they did that. Especially since you have to go into your account to activate this feature on top of having a compatible phone.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      Do not know, but I don’t think Advanced Calling 1.0 cares what your plan is.

  • Chris

    I just bought a S4 in December and that’s not supported? Give me a break..

    • Big Daddy

      Of course not. Doh…

    • TechTinker11

      Where does it say that it wont? Is there a list of all future devices? Well first the phone has to be made to support it I think, so that would be Sammy’s fault.

    • hkklife

      Irrelevant when you bought it. Things like that are determined by when a device launched and when it is expected to EOL. The GS4 came out in May 2013. The GS 3 had a solid 2year run as far as support goes so I wouldn’t expect the GS4 to be any different. I figure they eventually get around to supporting it later.

  • Jon

    “Video calls placed over WiFi do not count against your data plan.”

    So it still uses your minutes? Also, does this mean that WiFi calling would possible now? If so, does that count against your minutes?

    • tyguy829

      i have all of these questions too

    • CapnShiner

      I would be willing to bet that video calls will count against minutes, regardless of 4G or WiFi. Verizon is trying to get everybody onto tiered and/or shared data plans and those plans have unlimited minutes. Using minutes for WiFi calling would be an incentive for people to give up their unlimited data. It’s just one more way for Verizon to squeeze every penny out of its customers.

      • T4rd

        Not sure how that would be any more incentive than Unlimited data users currently have though. It’s not like being on WiFi right now doesn’t already count against your minutes. Plus if you’re still on their old 1400+ min plans (as I am), you have a family/friends list you can use to not count against mins. I have 3 lines sharing 1400 mins and never exceed half of that (because of family & friends).

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      The voice part of the call is separate from the video part; as in, a completely different data stream, that is synced to the voice through some kind of “magic” in the Verizon servers. Think of it this way: a voice call, through your phone’s normal dialer (not through Skype or Hangouts or some other VoIP service), will always use minutes. A video will always use data, regardless of how the call was initially placed due to it using upwards of 60-90x higher bitrate than an HD Voice call. Whether that data goes over LTE (pay) or wifi (free) will depend on the current data network being used by the phone.

      VoLTE and WiFi calling are completely separate call systems that are unrelated to each other. Verizon has yet to officially comment either for or against implementing wifi calling, only that they do not currently support it.

    • Frettfreak

      Minutes? You have to worry about how many minutes you use? Been a whole since I seen anything on any carrier that wasn’t unlimited talk but maybe I am wrong.

      • Cael

        Not everyone is on Verizon’s share everything or that other crap they did to get people off unlimited data.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Kellex B

      My understanding is that it still uses minutes, just no data. Verizon is separating these two things out.

  • Nathan Borup

    My question is does a call over Wi-Fi use minutes on my plan?

    • CapnShiner

      Probably. Any way they can charge more money…

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      All call audio is billed by the minute no matter what, video or no video. The video part of a call is treated like any other streaming video, billed to your data package by the byte or “free” via wifi.

  • Open1Your1Eyes0

    Regarding video calls I’d like to point to a twitter post by John Legere I’m sure you all will get a kick out of: https://twitter.com/JohnLegere/status/504383896486957058

    • Paul

      So it sucks for all the tiered users on both T-Mobile and Verizon.

      • Frettfreak

        Except that on tmo you get throttled, Verizon you get billed.

        • Cael

          One of these is better than the other…

        • Comk4ver

          Verizon is throttling us 4G unlimited people too remember?

    • Ehhhhh…

      Id bee a good laugh if Verizon comes back with:

      @JohnLegere, coverage = good for video chat. No coverage = bad for video chat.
      #shotsfired

      One can dream

      • CapnShiner

        Bazinga!

      • LiterofCola

        I lol’d

      • Frettfreak

        Been a while since you used tmo huh?

      • Eclipse

        Everywhere I need coverage, I have coverage on Tmo, without having to put up with the BS that is Verizon, Sprint, and AT&T

        • MicroNix

          Don’t travel outside your metro bubble do ya?

      • DanSan

        You’ve earned my upvote sir. well played.

    • PoisonApple31

      When is the last time you had 2G service on Verizon? Leaving an elevator? T-Mobile on the other hand – just on the way to Grandma’s house.

      • Jared Denman

        Verizons 3G service is just as slow as edge sometimes and here in indy my work phone goes down to 3G and 1x probably at least a few times a day.

        • Jwhap

          Exactly.

        • Chris Hannan

          Verizon’s 3G is slow, but good enough to stream music, browse the web, and send messages. Every time I’ve dropped down to T-Mobile’s EDGE, it’s practically useless. The only thing I can actually do is send instant messages, which can sometimes take half a minute to go through. Not really instant messaging at that point.

          Maybe you have better luck where you are, but when I see that E in my status bar on T-Mobile, I just put my phone in my pocket.

          • PoisonApple31

            Exactly.

      • Cael

        Last month when I was in California… in Long Beach. So annoying.

    • harrydevlin

      If only T-Mobile had coverage outside of urban areas.

  • airos4

    Handoff is a killer there. I’m in the Philly metro area where we have good coverage, but at least once a day I drop down for a few minutes.

    • HarvesterX

      And factor in not only worrying if you’re going to drop 4G but the person you’re calling as well.

  • Anon

    Bummer there is no handoff between lte and cdma. Recently my service in Los Angeles has gone from steller to meh. I have been hitting a lot more 3g areas. Not sure if it’s unlimited data or not but I wish their was a handoff.

    • Derrick Jefferson

      I have also noticed more drops to 3G lately. It caught my attention because I wondering what would happen if I had one of those 4GLTE-only phones Verizon may release in the future.

      • FreedomIsNotFree

        Voice calls currently use the 1X network, not 3G.

        • Mathiuz De Jesús

          But if there is no HD voice handle from LTE to CDMA as Sprint does, is it really a benefit? At least we can say Sprint has handle this the right way.

          • Justtyn Hutcheson

            Sprint uses their CDMA network for HD voice calls, not their LTE; it is a non-standard implementation due to their lack of LTE rollout.
            The reason it can’t be handed back and forth is because CDMA and LTE use two different radios on both the tower and the device. The two systems don’t talk to each other very well, so there is no way to re-initiate the stream moving from one to another consistently on Verizon’s end, and having two parallel data streams going on the device would severely increase power consumption during calls; it also would not be fast or stable enough for video calls over CDMA, so those would drop regardless. Their best bet for consistent application is to simply hold the LTE signal as long as possible while in a call, and if it can’t find any LTE anywhere, drop and reinitiate over 3G with a “regular” phone call, which will travel through LTE as it does now.

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            Lack of LTE? Are you serious on that comment? You probably have never heard of progress reports filed monthly by Sprint at the FCC, or perhaps S4GRU. If you think Sprint is way behind, you may be confusing them with T Mobile which totally lacks LTE coverage in rural areas.

            If you thought it was just plugging LTE equipment to a tower without changing every piece of hardware to weatherize an entire network for the next decade or two, you really need to do some research on Network Vision.

          • BobbyG

            u mad?

          • Mathiuz De Jesús

            Not mad, but some people need to get the facts correct before making any comments.

          • http://profiles.google.com/gallimichael Michael G. Galli

            I think you got that about 80% right, which is enough really. And T-Mobile does the same thing, BTW.

          • Justtyn Hutcheson

            After a little more digging, I found out that the restriction is in the call routing service the two networks use, circuit switching versus IMS, and that those are what don’t like each other and muck up the handoff.

            I didn’t know T-Mobile did the same thing moving from LTE to 3G. I wonder if that is why there are so many reports of dropped calls recently; they start out as VoLTE and move through a 3G area.

          • http://profiles.google.com/gallimichael Michael G. Galli

            With T-Mobile the issue is going from LTE to a 2G/EDGE/GSM Tower. It doesn’t have the capability for the handshake. From LTE to HSPA+/HPSA its all gravy.

          • Simon

            T-Mobile actually has a proper eSRVCC mechanism that handles calls from LTE down to 2G/GSM just fine. It’s only available to Release 10 networks, and T-Mobile has Release 10 equipment across the entire network so it’s all gravy there as well.

          • http://profiles.google.com/gallimichael Michael G. Galli

            Yeah, Thats correct :-) But I was just pointing out that thats where some issues pop up. Not all handsets are capable of that, EG, GSIII.

          • milanyc

            Sprint doesn’t even have Voice over LTE. You’re mixing it up with simultaneous Voice and LTE, which is device specific, and both Verizon and Sprint network support it.

        • http://profiles.google.com/gallimichael Michael G. Galli

          1XRTT *IS* 3G FYI :-)

      • 213ninja

        i noticed that only after upgrading to kit-kat.

      • Nate Opgenorth

        Well their is a threshold for signal strength of when a device will hand off from LTE to CDMA…just because it hands off doesn’t mean the signal was totally unusable. It really depends on how Verizon sets these thresholds, sometimes they set them exceedingly high and sometimes very low. I was in an area where I kept dropping to 3G despite having a quite useable signal, I later learned through a source that Verizon had been tinkering with the threshold for handoffs in the area. My guess is they might have been trying to balance the act of a phone saving battery by just using CDMA instead of using a weak LTE signal and optimal LTE along with VoLTE….There are several examples of networks that went 3G only with no GSM fall back and it was never a major issue, you don’t NEED two generations of cellular networks together, its nice but not NEEDED. LTE only devices in the future will help Verizon save on costs since adding CDMA costs extra since its not as common as the other standards…of course its getting cheaper and cheaper to throw in multiple standards into chipsets lately as evidenced by the iPhone 6 being able to support CDMA2000/GSM/UMTS/TD-SCDMA/FDD LTE/TD-LTE all in one chipset…of course Apple seams to be the only handset maker that likes to add as much support per handset but I expect this to change.

    • Bionicman

      i actually had to download an app to disable 4G in the building where i work. it keeps trying to search for 4G and drains my battery bad. i have no issues at home though so its the area. it used to be better but has gotten progressively worse.

      • DemetriosBarnes

        Why don’t you just turn off the LTE “4G”?

        • Jeremy Sheehan

          Back when I had my Bionic, turning off 4G was not an option after the ICS upgrade.

        • jamaall

          There used to be a hidden Phone Testing menu in the dialer back when I had ICS and maybe even 4.1 Jelly Bean. But it’s been gone since 4.2 forward I believe. I’ve been using Motorola devices. I could force my Droid RAZR onto 4G or off of it if I wanted to. Unfortunately the dialer code doesn’t do anything anymore.

          • T4rd

            It may be phone dependent, but you can still toggle what networks you want your phone to connect to through the hidden phone menu on newer 4.4 devices. Not sure if you can on Moto devices, but you can on Samsung and HTC devices. I use this app on my M8 all the time because LTE is weak in my building as well: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.cc.signalinfo&hl=en

            It requires root on Samsung devices though.

        • Bionicman

          on the NOTE 3, you can disable MOBILE DATA but its still searching for a 4G connection. Its strange. I can tell because my phone gets hot when its on 3G and trying to get a 4G connection. The app I used “Advance Signal Status” can force to CDMA only but you need to have ROOT.

        • beez1717

          I’ve been thinking about using #DATA## or whatever it is to just turn off 4G unless I really need it. I hate it how when I went to KitKat, it now searches for a data signal even fi I tell it to not use it. I want that thing OFF so i don’t lose battery power like no other.

    • Big Daddy

      Unlimited data is not honestly connected to the new service currently

    • laheelahee

      yup, noticed the same thing lately…

  • jwildman16

    Is that a typo or are they really activating this on the G2 before the G3?

    • Justtyn Hutcheson

      They’ve been testing with the G2 since late last year, so the patch is ready to push immediately. I would expect the G3, and many others, to follow within a few weeks, as well as the Fall devices (Note 4, Moto X+1, G2, iPhone 6(5/5s/5c, since iOS8 supposedly has VoLTE support built-in)) to have the feature at launch.

      • 213ninja

        i was thinking they probably did some metrics on their most in-use devices and S5 and G2 topped the list….at least, when they began testing as you’ve indicated.

      • Frettfreak

        Wonder if this will be how facetime calls are handled on Apple devices and is that differently than how they are handled now?

  • David Stevens

    Lol @ the people that still have Verizon

    • Derrick Jefferson

      LOL? Really? Lol to the people who don’t have Verizon, at least in my area. All other networks are garbage in the midwest. Verizon treats us like trash, but that network though… its the truth.

    • FreedomIsNotFree

      I laugh at you.

    • http://www.naskaras.com/ Thanassi Karageorgiou

      Yea. Keep laughing at our unlimited and widespread coverage lol.

    • Guest

      LOL @ the people that think T-Mobile is even comparable to Verizon. You must be one of the children George W Bush left behind.

    • 213ninja

      lol @ your selfie