Vodafone India, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the UK's Vodafone Group Plc, has rolled out Voice over LTE (VoLTE) services across Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Gujarat (Surat and Ahmedabad). Further, the telecom operator is readying to launch the services in Karnataka and Kolkata and extend it across the country in a phased manner over the next few months.
With this launch, Vodafone India becomes the third company to rollout VoLTE services, after Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel. While Jio offers services across the country, Airtel is offering VoLTE in Mumbai, Maharashtra, Goa, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Karnataka and Chennai circles.
Accessible on 4G mobile devices with a Vodafone 4G SIM, VoLTE service will provide HD quality voice. Vodafone's 4G customers can access VoLTE for no additional charges and all calls will be billed as per existing plan or pack benefits, the company said in a statement.
''In line with our commitment to introduce the best of breed technologies and consistently enhance customer experience, we are delighted to launch our VoLTE service across our three key circles,'' Sunil Sood, managing director and chief executive officer, Vodafone India, said.
''VoLTE will empower our customers to enjoy seamless connectivity of a higher level, enabling them to explore newer possibilities with their smart devices. We have consistently invested in building, a robust and future fit data strong network, pan India,'' he added.
Customers can access the services on all VoLTE-enabled devices. User can check the compatibility of their devices with VoLTE on the Vodafone website.
Vodafone India, which started operations in 2007, has more than 211 million customers of which more than 114 million are in rural areas. Vodafone India, the country's second largest operator, is in the last leg of merging with Idea Cellular, the number three operator by subscribers in India.
Idea Cellular has received approval from National Company Law Tribunal-Ahmedabad for its proposed merger with Vodafone Mobile Services and Vodafone India. Both telcos have received approval from the Securities and Exchange Board of India, shareholders, and the Competition Commission of India (CCI).
The $23-billion merger, announced on 20 March last year, will create India's largest telecom firm, which will be best placed to take on the threat posed by new entrant Reliance Jio Infocomm.