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truerock
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Teacher

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22 Messages

Thu, Dec 22, 2016 2:49 AM

HD Voice for iPhone 5

Can I add HD Voice capability to an iPhone  5 by getting a new SIM card for it?

When the iPhone 5 was first announced by Apple it noted that the iPhone 5 was HD Voice capable.  The problem was that AT&T did not have HD Voice at that time.

 

I want to make my iPhone 5 HD Voice capable so I can use AT&T Call Protect.

 

Thanks

ATTHelp

Community Support

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171.5K Messages

5 y ago

Hello, @truerock!

 

Thank you for your patience with the HD voice feature. I would love to go over the available options.

 

With an iPhone 5, replacing the SIM card will not get HD voice capabilities for your phone, I do apologize for this. AT&T is still working on getting this feature available to you, as quickly as possible.

 

I hope this information helps!

 

Jordan, AT&T Community Specialist

truerock

Teacher

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22 Messages

5 y ago

Thanks Jordan,

 

Yes, I put a new AT&T SIM card in my iPhone 5 and it still does not have AT&T HD Voice.  Apparently AT&T would need to push a "network provider" update out to Apple iPhone 5 to get AT&T HD Voice to work because AT&T was working on setting up HD Voice when the iPhone 5 was first being sold by AT&T.

 

From what I know, Apple iPhone 4s and older does not have HD Voice capability.

sandblaster

ACE - Expert

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53.1K Messages

5 y ago

@truerock I think you misunderstood Jordan's answer. I'm pretty sure HD Voice is not available for the iPhone 5. Only iPhone 6, 6s, 7 and SE models are HD Voice compatible. 

truerock

Teacher

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22 Messages

5 y ago

Sandblaster,

Jordan said, "AT&T is still working on getting this feature available to you, as quickly as possible.".

So, I'm just taking what he says at face value.

 

The iPhone 5 is AT&T HD Voice capable - but, it came out before AT&T had rolled out its HD Voice system.  So, I would guess there is a little bit of a disconnect and that a network provider update would need to be sent out by AT&T.

 

When AT&T came out with 4G data network, AT&T sent out an update to some of my family's iPhones.  Same thing with AT&T LTE.  So, I'm guessing Jordan meant what he wrote.

 

I got this info from the Apple News app that said it would also require the lates AT&T SIM.  I need to track that news item link down.

jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

5 y ago

@truerock,

 

The iPhone 5 supports wideband audio, which is where the "HD Voice" term came from.

 

AT&T doesn't support HD Voice on anything other than LTE (VoLTE). The only iPhones that support VoLTE are the iPhone 6 and above (https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT203078).

 

I believe the only carriers who support HD Voice without VoLTE are T-Mobile and Sprint.

 

 

I wasn't able to find any documents suggesting AT&T might expand HD Voice to non VoLTE calls.

 

The way to achieve HD Voice on AT&T would be to get an HD Voice (AT&T HD Voice that is) compatible phone such as the iPhone 6 or newer or a supported, carrier branded Android phone such as the Samsung Galaxy S7.

David606

Employee

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3.5K Messages

5 y ago

HD Voice on AT&T requires a VOLTE capable device. Anything under iPhone 6 is not VOLTE as far as I know.

lizdance40

ACE - Sage

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89.1K Messages

5 y ago

@truerock  Try "DU caller".  I have non ATT phones which are also not HD voice compatible on ATT.  

DU caller works the same, well actually it works better.  

 

truerock

Teacher

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22 Messages

5 y ago

VOLTE is transmitted over LTE frequency bands 2, 4 and 17.  Those LTE bands are supported by iPhone 5.

AT&T and the other US network providers are struggling with ironing out interoperability and other issues with the VOLTE CoDecs.  I'll make a wild guess and say perhaps AT&T will roll out its VOLTE CoDec to iPhone 5 (and any LTE capable AT&T supported smartphone) after AT&T feels like it has the CoDec technology issues completely worked out.

 

Obviously anyone can write an app to send voice from an iPhone 5 over the AT&T LTE network to another LTE capable iPhone running the same CoDec.  Its actually quite easy to do that.  Its the interoperability issues that make the implementation a challenging task.  Real-time streaming involves tricky QOS issues.

jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

5 y ago

@David606 that's my understanding as well. And I can't imagine AT&T choosing to activate HD Voice on the older networks. I think the only reason T-Mobile did it back then on their HSPA network was to try to compete.and say they had it when the others didn't.

David606

Employee

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3.5K Messages

5 y ago

This is the thing about the iPhone 5 and the belief it works with HD Voice/VOLTE. It features this:

 

https://www.theiphonewiki.com/wiki/MDM9615

 

This Qualcomm chip supports VOLTE but it's not enabled on these older iPhones.

 

If you want my opinion (and I know no one does) but there won't be any kind of rollouts for anything as old as the iPhone 5 or 5S/5C in regards to stuff like this. If it's not VOLTE out of the box then it's just not going to get patched in later. Remember, cellular carriers are businesses and selling people new phones is a big part of that. Now, this is my opinion here so do not take this as AT&T's stance or view but not allowing non-branded devices to use VOLTE is just as much a tech issue as it is a revenue and income one.

 

truerock

Teacher

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22 Messages

5 y ago

Justin,

 

VOLTE (voice over LTE networks) is a very simple technology over the LTE networks.  It is a specific CoDec agreed to by the network providers to send voice over LTE networks.  It does not require any recent smartphone hardware technology - other than LTE radios.

 

Perhaps if the VOLTE CoDecs become established - maybe the Codecs will be built into smartphone chipsets.  That has not occured at this point because the kinks are still being worked out and there seems to be issues between the AT&T CoDec interfacing with - say - Sprints CoDec.  I'm guessing AT&T will roll out new versions of its VOLTE CoDec from time to time over the immediate future.

 

There are lots of voice over Wifi apps available to run on almost any smartphone.  There's no reason AT&T can't add the same functionality for LTE for any LTE capable smartphone.

 

I can see that my iPhone 5 does not have LTE Voice available under Settings, Cellular, Cellullar Data Options.  I was trying to find out if anyone knew about what AT&Ts plans were regarding AT&T LTE capable smartphones that do not currently have VOLTE.

truerock

Teacher

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22 Messages

5 y ago

David,

 

Nice link - thanks.

 

From that link:

 

The Qualcomm MDM9615M ... in the iPhone 5 ... is responsible for transmitting simultaneous voice and data transfer on LTE (provided the carrier has the infrastructure to allow simultaneous voice and data transfer.)

 

So, as I said - the iPhone 5 is VoLTE capable - but, AT&T has not provided the network-provider software to do that on an iPhone 5 - yet.

 

And I would agree with your assesment that AT&T may not do it because - well - they just don't want to - but, I'm thinking it would be so trivial  a thing to do they might do it (AT&T has transmitted network tech updates before) - nobody knows.

jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

5 y ago

@truerock I'm aware of what VoLTE and HD Voice are and the differences and the requirements.

 

AT&T has a lot more control over their Android phones and may be able to add VoLTE and HD Voice onto older phones, but for iPhones, Apple is the gatekeeper. And they don't seem to want any iPhone under the iPhone 6 supporting VoLTE. And since AT&T only supports HD Voice on VoLTE, that would make the iPhone 5 not compatible with HD Voice on AT&T.

 

Honestly, I wish they would either make HD Voice available on UMTS/HSPA or make VoLTE available to more phones. I'd love to have more calls be HD Voice quality. The difference is amazing.

 

I would even like for Apple to provide a reason as to why no phone before the 6 does support VoLTE.

 

I know the article @David606 (also I do like your opinions, David) says the hardware is capable of it, but I can't find any instance of any carrier supporting it because it doesn't appear as though Apple allowed it. That's nothing new with Apple.

 

jt212s

Professor

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1.1K Messages

5 y ago

@truerock I did also miss your last line in your post.

 

While I'm of course no official source, just judging by previous AT&T rollouts, I'm going to say that even for the older Android phones that AT&T could possibly add VoLTE/HD Voice to, they probably won't. 😞

 

Like @David606 said, they wanna sell more phones, and they wanna sell newer phones. Is it that hard to implement the software updates for VoLTE/HD Voice? No clue. But it could make people decide a new phone isn't needed and there goes some income for them.

David606

Employee

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3.5K Messages

5 y ago

It takes resources to do that. You have to dedicate people and software update teams to create and deploy these updates.

 

Pretty sure this isn't a segment of any cellular carrier that has thousands of people. Maybe a handful of teams working on software updates. There are current and future phones that need development for also. Putting people on software updates for older devices takes away from resources for current and upcoming ones.

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