At the Consumer Electronics Show, T-Mobile has announced that it will become the first U.S. carrier to launch HD Voice on its nationwide network which will help improve call quality. However, in order for HD voice to work, customers must have a compatible device. According to the carrier, HD Voice will work with the Galaxy S III from Samsung, the HTC One S, and even the Nokia Astound.
HD Voice does add richer audio fidelity to calls to allow the caller’s voice to sound better. T-Mobile won’t be the only one adding HD Voice to its network. Sprint had stated that it intends to launch HD Voice soon, and the feature was demoed before on the HTC EVO 4G LTE. AT&T had also announced that it intends on launching HD Voice later this year.
T-Mobile’s HD Voice implementation will work on the carrier’s 3G network and will use the AMR-WB standard for encoding. And since the iPhone 5 from Apple technically supports the same AMR-WB codec for HD Voice implemented by T-Mobile, theoretically the iPhone 5 should be compatible with T-Mobile’s network. And even though the carrier doesn’t currently support the iPhone on its network, T-Mobile had hinted that 2013 could be the year that the iPhone 5 will come to its 4G network.
Additionally, for HD Voice to work, both the caller and the recipient of the call must have an HD Voice-compatible handset. This may limit HD Voice from landlines then.
For users who use an unlocked iPhone 5 from AT&T’s network, the phone will work on T-Mobile’s HSPA+ network in select markets. The carrier also announced that San Diego, Los Angeles, Denver, and Virginia Beach will now offer T-Mobile HSPA+ access to iPhone users.