Back in September 2017, Bharti Airtel started rolling out its VoLTE or Voice over LTE service in the country with an aim to make the service available on the pan-India basis by the end of 2019. Seems like Airtel will achieve the target as the telco has now launched its VoLTE service in 21 telecom circles. When we reported back in August this year, the service was live in 20 telecom circles, except for Himachal Pradesh and Jammu Kashmir. But Airtel has rolled out its VoLTE services in Himachal Pradesh now and it might offer the same to its 4G subscribers in Jammu Kashmir. In contrast, Idea Cellular has its VoLTE services across 20 telecom circles in India.
Airtel Might Become Pan-India VoLTE Operator by the End of 2018
At the moment, Reliance Jio is the only pan-India VoLTE telecom service provider in the country because the Mukesh Ambani-owned telco operates voice calls only on VoLTE. Notably, Jio is the alone LTE-only operator in India. Airtel is next to Jio because it offers 4G services in all the 22 telecom circles, but when the 4G network is not available, the network will fall back to 3G and 2G. Airtel might launch VoLTE services in Jammu Kashmir by the end of 2018 to become pan-India VoLTE operator by the end of 2018.
Airtel Beats Vodafone in the VoLTE Rollout
Back in August this year, Airtel VoLTE was available only in 12 telecom circles, but now, it has been live in 21 circles, comfortably beating Vodafone which is still providing VoLTE in just 12 circles.
All Popular Smartphones Now Support Airtel VoLTE
When Airtel rolled out VoLTE services in select circles, the Airtel VoLTE compatibility device list was very small. Over the course of the last 11 months, the list just got bigger with brands such as Sony, Huawei, Honor, Nokia, Tecno, Infinix and others adding Airtel VoLTE support to their smartphones.
Japanese smartphone brand, Sony recently added Airtel VoLTE support to its flagship smartphone Sony Xperia XZ2. Even the entry-level smartphones from Tecno, Infinix, Spice and Lava are now coming with Airtel VoLTE support out of the box, which is a very good thing to see. Earlier, smartphones used to come with just Jio VoLTE support out of the box, which has changed over the course of time. The newly launched OnePlus 6T also has support for Airtel VoLTE.
Popular smartphones such as the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro, Redmi Note 5, OnePlus 6 and so on support Airtel VoLTE.
Still No Airtel VoLTE Support for Pixel Devices
Yes, you read that right. Search giant, Google is yet to add Airtel VoLTE support to its Pixel and Pixel 2 devices. Vodafone recently added VoLTE support to last year’s Pixel 2 devices, but so far, there’s no word from Airtel.
About Airtel VoLTE
Airtel rolled out its VoLTE services back in September 2017 with a promise of pan-India rollout by March 2018. However, that didn’t happen as the company took eight months more to make the service available in 21 circles. Aforesaid, Airtel VoLTE pan-India rollout is expected to happen in the next few weeks. Over the course of last 11 months, Airtel has rolled out VoLTE services in a phased manner. Airtel even started an Airtel VoLTE Beta program, under which it took feedback from the consumers and in return, it offered 30GB of free data for testing the service for eight weeks.