Airtel To Launch VoLTE Soon, Nothing Unique Left For Jio

The only area Airtel was lagging behind Reliance Jio in providing all round 4G experience to its customers was VoLTE but the operator is all set to plug that gap too, and that too very soon.

The Airtel 4G is soon coming with VoLTE support, and with multiple handset brands, sources informed.

Sources informed that the required technology and infrastructure is ready to be rolled out on Airtel’s network but the company is conducting some ‘last minute’ testings on compatible devices.

At present the operator is conducting trials on multiple smartphones and one of the smartphone brands that has successfully passed the tests was Gionee, sources at both the firms informed. Multiple models of Gionee including its first VoLTE phone P7 are now compatible with Airtel VoLTE.

At present Reliance Jio is the only operator in the country that offers VoLTE or voice over LTE networks. Because VoLTE is offered on the data network and calls are made over IP, operators incur very less cost providing the service. Primarily that was the reason why Reliance Jio is offering voice calls free to its subscribers. And this ‘free’ stuff is snatching away customers from incumbent operators including Airtel.

In November last year Airtel had contracted Nokia in a Rs 402 crore deal to deploy VoLTE infrastructure for its pan India network and the company has been working in this regard since the launch of Jio that offered VoLTE facility to its customers.

While Airtel boasts of its robust 4G network and claims to have the ‘smart’ as well as ‘fastest’ network in the country, Jio boasts of its all-IP network and dirt cheap offerings on data, and free voice service. With the launch of VoLTE, Airtel too would be in a position to free voice calling services to its customers too.

Since the entry of Reliance Jio to the telecom arena, the operator has developed a rivalry with the incumbent operators, especially with Airtel, to acquire the market of 4G customers. While the early fights between Airtel and Jio was around PoI (points of interconnect) where the new operator was blaming the incumbents of unfair practice, and the incumbents like Airtel putting the blame back on Jio saying its network is faulty, the latest was between the two was around Airtel’s claim of having the fastest network.

While the war is in its full steam, Jio is busy acquiring new customers and Airtel is busy in steadily plugging all the gaps to retain its supremacy in the Indian telecom market. The VoLTE offering was one such big gap.

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