The Verizon iPhone 6 needs one small, but important feature to catch up to what the AT&T iPhone has offered for years — support for talking and surfing at the same time. Sometimes this feature is called simultaneous voice and data, but what it means is users can talk on the phone and use the internet at the same time.
The iPhone 6 could very likely be the first Verizon iPhone to support talking and using the internet at the same time thanks to the launch of VoLTE this year.
VoLTE is a new type of network that can deliver enhanced services not found on the current Verizon network, like HD Voice and the ability to talk and surf at the same time. With this technology calls and data both travel on the faster 4G LTE network. Currently voice calls use the older 3G network, which is why the Verizon iPhone 5s dos not let users talk and surf at the same time.
While most of the early commercials for this feature on AT&T missed the real point, there are dozens of times every week that I wish I had this feature on the Verizon iPhone 5s. I regularly hear from readers like Richard Blate, who want to be able to talk and surf at the same time on a Verizon iPhone.
Verizon originally planned to deliver this new VoLTE network in 2013, after announcing the completion of the 4G LTE network, but in December the company confirmed that users will need to wait for VoLTE in 2014.
It’s not clear if the iPhone 5s or iPhone 5 will support VoLTE when the network rolls out, but there is precedent for devices on Verizon network being ready for VoLTE. The Samsung Galaxy S3, which launched in 2012, supports VoLTE through a software update. In late December Lightreading shared a screenshot showing the Verizon Galaxy Note 3 is VoLTE ready.
There is hope that 2014 will bring not only an iPhone 6 that lets Verizon users talk and surf, but also an update to the iPhone 5s that delivers this feature. An AppleInsider report from September 24th states that in addition to supporting new LTE bands, the iPhone 5s is VoLTE ready.
As long as Verizon is able to roll out VoLTE in 2014 this is a feature that we should see on the iPhone 6 for Verizon users. There is always a chance that Verizon won’t be able to meet the goal due to complications of bringing this technology to the real world. AT&T just confirmed that the carrier’s VoLTE plans are delayed, and did not offer any new timeframe for roll out.