VoLTE Solution: For multiple telecom and home gateways

LTE or Long Term Evolution is a standard for high-speed wireless communication especially for mobile devices and telecom networks. The last few years have seen this technological standard being adopted by various telecom operators all over the world.

This adoption has enabled faster data transfer to and from mobile devices. As a result there has been a deluge of services cashing on this enhancement – mainly in the form of streaming media applications. Voice and Video over LTE is thus an application in demand.

Background and Challenges

Voice over IP (VoIP) applications have been around for sometime. Over the top (OTT) VoIP apps like Skype and WhatsApp are some very common applications that occupy this space. Their popularity has effectively reduced the usage of common mobile phone calls and hence operator revenues.

LTE is essentially an enablement in the radio layer. This allows enhanced processing at a chip level rather than at the software level in mobile phones. Telecom operators, keen to cash on this enhancement are now trying to use latest and more efficient media codecs to offer better services to the users. This holds the promise of lesser call drops, better performance and more uptime. This is what they call as Voice / Video over LTE (VoLTE).

In order that this can be adopted across telecom operators, geographic boundaries, mobile handset vendor OEMs and application developers, there was a need to have a standard developed. The VoLTE standards thus evolved in collaboration with international telecom and mobile standards bodies like 3GPP, ETSI, GSMA et al.

These standards needless to say are comprehensive and vast. Any solution provider needs to understand these effectively to deliver a proper VoLTE solution. This is a big challenge.

Another major issue is of cross vendor compliance. A VoLTE call from one handset through one telecom operator may land up at a handset made by another vendor operating under a different telecom operator.

In order such a call happens seamlessly, there has to be lot of inter operability issues ironed out. IOT (Inter operability testing) is thus a huge time and effort investment.

In addition to this is the issue of a fragmented mobile device OS space – namely that of Android. The complexities of deploying a VoLTE solution across handsets get amplified with various versions of Android and various flavors of it being adopted by different handset OEMs.

Apt Software’s contribution

We have been in the standards based (3GPP / OMA / RCS / VoLTE) telecom mobile stack development business for the last 15 years. We have developed VoLTE software for mobile phones for multiple major telecom operators around the world. Software developed by us has got deployed on millions of handsets. We have a substantial amount of experience in carrying out IOT exercises at various telecom operator labs.

We have also developed and deployed complete client end VoLTE solutions on chips that goes not only in mobile phones but also in home gateways, which allow home gateway vendors to use the LTE back-end to communicate easily and effectively with home devices.

We have around 100 man-years of experience on this domain.

Currently, we are involved in developing a VoLTE micro-stack that would go on in CAT-1 and CAT-M devices. This is targeted for VoLTE to be available on small devices suitable for IoT (Internet of Things) and Wearable technologies along with other related technologies like Smart Homes and Cities, Telematics and the like.

We are also building an eMBMS solution (Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Services) for mobile phones, which will enable telecom operators to stream multi-cast video streams to millions of LTE mobile handsets simultaneously.