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Thread: VoLTE hand-offs between LTEiRA and Native Verizon

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    VoLTE hand-offs between LTEiRA and Native Verizon

    I was sitting in a "buffer city" as I like to call it today (Louisa, KY). Both Verizon and Appalachian Wireless have LTE in this city. As many of you know, it doesn't matter if you're on native VZW or not, your phone will display "Verizon LTE" if VoLTE is enabled. If I disable VoLTE, my phone says extended LTE

    Anyways, as I was on a call today (VoLTE), I kept dropping the call and couldn't figure out why. My mobile nerd mind remembered I was in a buffer area. Disabled VoLTE and held the call no problem. I guess this proves Appalachian Wireless doesn't operate on VZW's LTE core as they say. I would think if they did the VoLTE call would rollover to the native VZW site.
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    Quote Originally Posted by justinkk2005 View Post
    I was sitting in a "buffer city" as I like to call it today (Louisa, KY). Both Verizon and Appalachian Wireless have LTE in this city. As many of you know, it doesn't matter if you're on native VZW or not, your phone will display "Verizon LTE" if VoLTE is enabled. If I disable VoLTE, my phone says extended LTE

    Anyways, as I was on a call today (VoLTE), I kept dropping the call and couldn't figure out why. My mobile nerd mind remembered I was in a buffer area. Disabled VoLTE and held the call no problem. I guess this proves Appalachian Wireless doesn't operate on VZW's LTE core as they say. I would think if they did the VoLTE call would rollover to the native VZW site.
    Not every LTEiRA partner has VoLTE capability, I don't know how your phone's display would look in those systems that don't.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ggore View Post
    Not every LTEiRA partner has VoLTE capability, I don't know how your phone's display would look in those systems that don't.
    From what I understand, as long as you're in a LTEiRA area and have LTE (and VoLTE enabled on your VZW phone), you should. Appalachian Wireless does not have VoLTE deployed at all on band 13. They're testing band 12 right now for VoLTE/VoWiFi. I have several friends who work there who advised me of this. I was in a Bluegrass Cellular (another LTEiRA partner) about two weeks ago and had VoLTE with VZW. If I disable VoLTE, of course I go back to "Extended LTE". I always go to Extended LTE for a split second and then it changes to "Verizon LTE" when in a LTEiRA area.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ggore View Post
    Not every LTEiRA partner has VoLTE capability, I don't know how your phone's display would look in those systems that don't.
    If the Verizon phone isn't utilizing VoLTE in an LRA area, it will display "Extended LTE" on an iPhone or "Extended Network" on an Android phone with "4G LTE" next to the signal bars, meaning you have 1x voice with LTE data. That's only when the Verizon customer has HD Voice turned off though.

    LRA carriers don't need to do anything for Verizon customers to get VoLTE. VoLTE is packet switched so the LRA carrier relays the call to Verizon over data, sort of like how VoWiFi works. That's why you can dial 611 for customer service on a Verizon phone with HD Voice enabled while in an LRA area now. You could never do this on 1x because it wasn't Verizon's native network but now it is. You can also use Verizon Prepaid in LRA areas now.

    Quote Originally Posted by justinkk2005 View Post
    From what I understand, as long as you're in a LTEiRA area and have LTE (and VoLTE enabled on your VZW phone), you should. Appalachian Wireless does not have VoLTE deployed at all on band 13. They're testing band 12 right now for VoLTE/VoWiFi. I have several friends who work there who advised me of this. I was in a Bluegrass Cellular (another LTEiRA partner) about two weeks ago and had VoLTE with VZW.
    I think it behaves this way too because I'm also in an LRA area and my Verizon phone works the same as you're describing. The LRA carrier here doesn't have VoLTE on b13 or any other band for that matter. I don't think LRA carriers will ever use b13 or any Verizon spectrum for VoLTE in their native coverage area because it's not their network. LRA carriers will use their own b2, b4, b5 and b12 spectrum for voice in their native coverage areas because if they didn't, they'd basically be a Verizon MVNO.

    Quote Originally Posted by justinkk2005 View Post
    I always go to Extended LTE for a split second and then it changes to "Verizon LTE" when in a LTEiRA area.
    Are you saying when you go from a native Verizon site to an LRA site that it goes to "Extended LTE" for a split second?

    I'll have to test to see if I can hold a VoLTE call between an LRA site and Verizon site in my area.
    Last edited by andrew110; 02-05-2017 at 12:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew110 View Post
    I don't think LRA carriers will ever use b13 or any Verizon spectrum for VoLTE in their native coverage area because it's not their network. LRA carriers will use their own b2, b4, b5 and b12 spectrum for voice in their native coverage areas because if they didn't, they'd basically be a Verizon MVNO.
    It's interesting that you bring this up. Do any of the LRAs use B12 significantly? I raise this because Verizon has begun to neuter B12 from their devices - to prevent use on T-Mobile. But in the process, that would really hurt Verizon device's ability to work/roam on LRAs that depend on B12, if they are many/any.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hatoncat View Post
    It's interesting that you bring this up. Do any of the LRAs use B12 significantly? I raise this because Verizon has begun to neuter B12 from their devices - to prevent use on T-Mobile. But in the process, that would really hurt Verizon device's ability to work/roam on LRAs that depend on B12, if they are many/any.
    These areas have b13 already so they won't be missing anything, really. Verizon devices will prefer any Verizon spectrum in these areas be it b13 or b4

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew110 View Post
    These areas have b13 already so they won't be missing anything, really. Verizon devices will prefer any Verizon spectrum in these areas be it b13 or b4
    I'm thinking the truly rural areas where Verizon isn't using its core and isn't extending spectrum. If one of those carriers is using B12, Verizon is basically depriving coverage to people in order to keep their phones from being used flawlessly on T-Mobile. Not good!

    Then again, I don't know the spectrum licenses of the LRAs, so it may be a non-issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hatoncat View Post
    I'm thinking the truly rural areas where Verizon isn't using its core and isn't extending spectrum. If one of those carriers is using B12, Verizon is basically depriving coverage to people in order to keep their phones from being used flawlessly on T-Mobile. Not good!

    Then again, I don't know the spectrum licenses of the LRAs, so it may be a non-issue.
    I'm not sure many of these areas exist. Are there any small CDMA carriers that haven't deployed Verizon's b13? I don't know of any.

    If there were, Verizon could always build out in these areas with b13 sites.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew110 View Post
    I'm not sure many of these areas exist. Are there any small CDMA carriers that haven't deployed Verizon's b13? I don't know of any.

    If there were, Verizon could always build out in these areas with b13 sites.
    Well like you said:

    I don't think LRA carriers will ever use b13 or any Verizon spectrum for VoLTE in their native coverage area because it's not their network. LRA carriers will use their own b2, b4, b5 and b12 spectrum
    Sure, Verizon could deploy B13 sites in these areas, but the whole point of the LRA was so rural carriers could give roaming interop with a national network. And in-turn, Verizon could paint rural areas they don't touch with LRA coverage as Extended LTE.

    Here's what I think: I think most LRAs own B2 & B4, so Verizon just decided to forego B12 for now on their devices, placing the subsidy risk from DPP phones leaking to T-Mobile, higher-priority than the possible-yet-unlikely scenario that a Moto Z Droid can't find an LRA's B12 signal.

    The problem is these LRAs have limited spectrum and there's a potential (assuming an LRA uses B12) when you're out in the middle of nowhere that a B12 LRA could be the only signal out there.

    The more I think about this, the more I think it's a bad idea to have a Verizon phone without B12 if you're going to a very rural/remote area. Especially with E911 going VoLTE, even if an LRA isn't available... you could still use a T-Mobile B12 signal to call 911... unless of course, your phone doesn't have B12.

    This is non-trivial for me as I regularly vacation-drive into USCC country - where they use Band 12 and have a VoLTE roaming pact with T-Mobile. I'd hate to hear a Verizon customer couldn't call 911 because Verizon neutered a phone, but in US Cellular territory... that's now a real possibility.

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    Do most AT&T & T-Mobile phones have B13?

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    Quote Originally Posted by CircuitSwitched View Post
    Do most AT&T & T-Mobile phones have B13?
    I'm not trying to keep count either way, but I know they don't overtly neuter it... same can't be said for Verizon on B12.

    Also B12, unlike B13, is shared on AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and USCC phones. Only Verizon attempts to deny B12 from their devices. Far more E911 (non-Verizon) signals on that low-frequency B12 spectrum, than the converse.

    I think that once VoLTE becomes mandatory, that Verizon should add B12 so that their devices can at least call E911 via VoLTE when Verizon is not available and another carrier is. Today that's possible with the GSM/UMTS radio, but those are already being phased on (particularly GSM).

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    VoLTE hand-offs between LTEiRA and Native Verizon

    Quote Originally Posted by hatoncat View Post
    Well like you said:



    Sure, Verizon could deploy B13 sites in these areas, but the whole point of the LRA was so rural carriers could give roaming interop with a national network. And in-turn, Verizon could paint rural areas they don't touch with LRA coverage as Extended LTE.

    Here's what I think: I think most LRAs own B2 & B4, so Verizon just decided to forego B12 for now on their devices, placing the subsidy risk from DPP phones leaking to T-Mobile, higher-priority than the possible-yet-unlikely scenario that a Moto Z Droid can't find an LRA's B12 signal.

    The problem is these LRAs have limited spectrum and there's a potential (assuming an LRA uses B12) when you're out in the middle of nowhere that a B12 LRA could be the only signal out there.

    The more I think about this, the more I think it's a bad idea to have a Verizon phone without B12 if you're going to a very rural/remote area. Especially with E911 going VoLTE, even if an LRA isn't available... you could still use a T-Mobile B12 signal to call 911... unless of course, your phone doesn't have B12.

    This is non-trivial for me as I regularly vacation-drive into USCC country - where they use Band 12 and have a VoLTE roaming pact with T-Mobile. I'd hate to hear a Verizon customer couldn't call 911 because Verizon neutered a phone, but in US Cellular territory... that's now a real possibility.
    But why would you pick up a b12 signal in an LRA area but not a b13 signal? Both bands would be on the same site.

    I really don't think this would be a problem like you think it is.

    Even if there was only b12, your phone is going to fall back to 1x. And in a few years b5 LTE will be pretty much everywhere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew110 View Post
    But why would you pick up a b12 signal in an LRA area but not a b13 signal? Both bands would be on the same site.

    I really don't think this would be a problem like you think it is.

    Even if there was only b12, your phone is going to fall back to 1x. And in a few years b5 LTE will be pretty much everywhere.
    You might not get a B13 signal if Verizon didn't deploy on that cell site. If the LRA was not using the Verizon cell core and running their own towers and Verizon wasn't broadcasting jointly.

    B5 is going to be pretty much everywhere Verizon is. My concern is where Verizon is not available, after 1x/GSM/UMTS are shut down (in less than two years, possibly). We could be in a situation where some roaming phones will be able to call 911 and some won't.

    Another Related Scenario: It's 2019. A Moto Z Droid (no B12) is in a rural area. USCC and T-Mobile are available, but have shut down all older signals (LTE only). This individual now can't call 911 because B12 was disabled in firmware/baseband config by Verizon.

    This is coming faster than a lot of people think, and it's far from theoretical. I just painted two scenarios where it could happen.

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    VoLTE hand-offs between LTEiRA and Native Verizon

    Quote Originally Posted by hatoncat View Post
    You might not get a B13 signal if Verizon didn't deploy on that cell site. If the LRA was not using the Verizon cell core and running their own towers and Verizon wasn't broadcasting jointly.

    B5 is going to be pretty much everywhere Verizon is. My concern is where Verizon is not available, after 1x/GSM/UMTS are shut down (in less than two years, possibly). We could be in a situation where some roaming phones will be able to call 911 and some won't.

    Another Related Scenario: It's 2019. A Moto Z Droid (no B12) is in a rural area. USCC and T-Mobile are available, but have shut down all older signals (LTE only). This individual now can't call 911 because B12 was disabled in firmware/baseband config by Verizon.

    This is coming faster than a lot of people think, and it's far from theoretical. I just painted two scenarios where it could happen.
    I didn't think Verizon had anything to do with deploying any b13 or b4 equipment in LRA areas. Verizon basically gave them access to their spectrum and their network, but the LRA carriers had to build everything out.

    I'm 99% sure every LRA carrier will have b13 on all of their cell sites, why wouldn't they? For many of these carriers, b13 is still the only LTE they have.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andrew110 View Post
    I didn't think Verizon had anything to do with deploying any b13 equipment in LRA areas. Verizon basically gave them access to their spectrum and their network, but the LRA carriers had to build everything out.

    I'm 99% sure every LRA carrier will have b13 on all of their cell sites, why wouldn't they? For many of these carriers, b13 is still the only LTE they have.
    And that's why I was asking. I could see some carriers with LRA not using B13 but using their own B12 licenses that they shaved off of USCC or T-Mobile (or got them somewhere else, maybe even Verizon).

    We got sidetracked a bit with the notion that rural roaming devices might also not have E911 access to T-Mobile/USCC in a couple years, but these are entangled issues that Verizon could easily solve... by simply not neutering B12 from their devices in the first place.

    It will be interesting to see when the Moto Z Droid has its first baseband rooting, and people go into QPST and turn B12 on. As we've seen from past Motorola releases, this is normally a QPST configuration setting - nothing more.

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