Verizon, one of the two largest North American carriers, is releasing a software update for the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. Looking through the update release notes, the most exciting is to see a reference to Verizon’s Advanced Calling 2.0 being enabled as part of the update. This new iteration of Verizon’s Advanced Calling improves upon the existing Advanced Calling 1.0 standard, which introduced HD Voice and Video Calling over the LTE network. Verizon’s Advanced Calling 2.0 introduces Wi-Fi calling, called VoWiFi, together with enhanced conference calling features. It appears that Verizon are launching Advanced Voice 2.0 from tomorrow, then, although it is also entirely possible that Samsung are a little premature.
However, whilst there are only two changes, it is important to recognize the significance of Wi-Fi calling. Although Verizon have comprehensive cellular coverage, there are still areas of poor reception, such as deep inside buildings and similar. For these areas, where the customer has a connection with a compatible Wi-Fi hotspot, he or she will be able to continue to make and receive calls. It’s a feature that other devices and carriers have had for some time and whilst arguably Verizon have had less of a reason to use the technology, this argument becomes moot if your Verizon Wireless device is unable to lock onto a signal. Modern smartphones are more than capable of handling calling over WiFi or data networks providing they are connected with compatible systems. Furthermore, VoIP (Voice-over-IP, essentially, using a data network for a voice call) technologies such as those behind the VoWiFi Wi-Fi calling are essential building blocks of the future of mobile telecommunications. VoIP allows a better quality of sound to be sent and received between devices and also reduces the need for cellular connections, which potentially opens up an exciting new world of using other devices to handle calls so as to make life easier.
The firmware versions for the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are G920VVRU4BOK7 and G925VVRU4BOK7 respectively, and are due to arrive from Tuesday, 7 December 2015. Other notes for this release include ALM and wireless charging fixes, plus an improvement to the audio in the form of UHQA. We will update readers with more information as it becomes available.