Mobile HDVoice; A Post In Three Acts

Act 1: The Future – Sprint To Offer HDVoice Nationwide in July

iPhone-SprintSprint,  the nation’s number #3 mobile carrier, has announced nationwide rollout of HDVoice in early July. At present they have just a few test markets HDVoice enabled. While some met the announcement with enthusiasm, HDVoice observer Doug Mohney has taken a justifiable wait-and-see approach to this news as Sprint has made such promises more than once in recent years.

Ever curious, I thought it worth looking into what kind of HD Voice-capable devices they would be offering. The list of twenty handsets seems quite comprehensive. That bodes well for customers someday actually getting to experience HDVoice.

Just as significantly, the HD Voice capable handsets was easy to identify. The company lists “HD Voice” as a key feature that can be used to search through the entirety of their handset offering. Thus new customers can easily reference this feature while in the process of selecting their new handset.

That brings me to…

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Defining HD Voice vs HD Audio

Earlier today Doug Mohney of HDVoiceNews issued an interesting tweet;

Briefing with Tier 1 telco on #HDvoice. Product manager started using the useless marketing term #HDaudio. Maybe should use #HDtelephony?

I find myself agreeing with Doug’s assertion that “HD Audio” is not appropriate terminology. “HD Audio” is way too broad a term, and more appropriate used with respect to entertainment than telephony.

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HDVoice: On The Cheap & Analog RJ-11 Style

HDVoice RJ-11 Wall Plate A short while back I addressed the question of how DECT & CAT-iq may foster the broad deployment of HDVoice. At that time I described one possible scenario where carriers would deploy customer premises equipment (CPE) with an on-board cordless base station. Although a frontrunner, and the basis of Comcast’s (decidedly non-HD) HomePoint service, this is not the only approach afoot. There’s another possibility arising that involves conveying HDVoice over a plain old analog RJ-11 connection.

At first glance HDVoice and analog lines would certainly seem to be mutually exclusive. The common wisdom is that wideband telephony requires the use of an all-IP call path. This is in fact a generalization, and not absolutely true.

Firstly, it has long been possible to pass wideband audio, in the form of G.722 encoded media, over the PSTN by way of ISDN connections. Also known as BRI interfaces, an ISDN connection supports  up to two 64 kbps channels (bearer channels) and one D channel for the purposes of call setup & teardown signaling. High-quality voice using G.722 was one of the selling points of ISDN in the 1980s.

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Randy’s Guest Post At HDVoice News

Randy Resnick (a.k.a. Zeeek, or more recently Dulo Par) the founder of the VoIP Users Conference, has a guest post over at HDVoice News called, “An “ear opener” to HD voice in conferencing.” Randy details the advantages of wideband voice for large public conference calls. He should know, having produced thousands of hours of podcast based upon such calls over the past few years.

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HDVoice News Names Top Ten Most Influential People in Promoting HDVoice

HDVoiceNewsSmallLogoIt’s nearing the end of the year so some of the punditry have started making prognostications. Those who don’t look back at the year just past for fear that the coming year holds untold terrors. And of course, top ten lists start showing up well beyond the confines of David Letterman’s Late Show.

Most of this I simply ignore, but Doug Mohney at HDVoice News has an interesting top ten list; 2009 HD Voice Players – 10 people who have moved HD Voice forward over the past year.

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