Orange Starts HD Voice Calling Trial

Orange has begun trialling a new high definition voice technology service which it says will introduce a new “a new era for mobile communications and a new standard for the telecoms industry”.
Trials of Orange HD Voice have started in Bristol, Reading and Southampton, and the mobile network operator plans to roll out the service on its 3G network to all its UK customers later this summer.
According to Orange, HD Voice “virtually eliminates” distance between callers, making conversations sound far more realistic.
Andrew Warner, the company’s head of voice and messaging products, explained: “The aim is to make it seem as though you are talking to someone in the same room – you will be able to make a call from a football match or concert and actually have a normal conversation.”
“We think this will become the norm for calls and feedback from everyone who has trialled it is that it is very good.”
The technology, which Orange has already launched in Moldova, is based on the WB-AMR (Wideband Adaptive Multi-Rate) speech codec. WB-AMR helps improve sound quality by expanding the standard mobile phone bandwidth from 300-3400Hz to 50-7000Hz.
Orange said the service will be offered free to existing customers. However it will initially only be available on a small range of 3G enabled handsets.