Ericsson launches Wi-Fi calling for multi-device

  • Operator voice service coverage extended to millions of Wi-Fi-only devices such as tablets and personal computers

  • Consumers can make regular voice calls on personal devices located across different Wi-Fi networks

  • Wi-Fi calling one way to support voice calling in locations with poor cellular coverage and without the use of over-the-top voice services

Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) today announces the addition of a new functionality, Wi-Fi calling for multi-device, to the existing Ericsson Wi-Fi calling solution. This functionality enables operators to extend voice service coverage from smartphones to millions of Wi-Fi-only devices such as tablets and personal computers, creating value for consumers worldwide and bringing operators new business opportunities.

With Wi-Fi calling for multi-device, consumers can use devices that have only Wi-Fi access capabilities to make regular voice calls over any Wi-Fi network. The consumer's personal devices can be located at different Wi-Fi access points anywhere in the world, while their smartphone can be on cellular access or any Wi-Fi access point, and consumers can choose to pick up calls on any of the devices.

Calls can therefore be made in locations with poor cellular coverage, such as inside residential buildings. In addition, consumers are no longer forced to rely on over-the-top voice services over Wi-Fi access. Wi-Fi calling for multi-device is integrated natively in devices that support this functionality, meaning that consumers can enjoy an easy-to-use and intuitive service.

Anders Olin, Head of Product Area Network Functions, Ericsson, says: "While natively integrated Wi-Fi calling in smartphones has been commercially available for some time, both consumers and operators can benefit from extending this functionality to multiple devices. We are excited to launch Wi-Fi calling for multi-device, which is a clear example of how Ericsson's technology leadership is helping to create differentiated user experiences."

Ericsson has added the new Wi-Fi calling for multi-device functionality to the existing Ericsson Wi-Fi calling solution. The Ericsson offering comprises product support in Evolved Packet Core (EPC), IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), User Data Management (UDM) and OSS/BSS, as well as system integration services. The functionality is verified and tested end-to-end towards device brands that support this service.

The Ericsson solution supports multiple options for call set-up use cases, such as simultaneous calls on several devices and transfer of ongoing calls between devices. These can be enabled on any device type in line with device ecosystem developments.

It is expected that the first operators will commercially launch Wi-Fi calling for multi-device services during 2015. Ericsson supported the world's first commercial Wi-Fi calling launch and has since supported numerous operators in launching native Wi-Fi calling for smartphones.

Further information on the Ericsson Wi-Fi calling solution can be found here.

A recent Ericsson ConsumerLab report reveals consumer attitudes towards native Wi-Fi calling and can be downloaded here.

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