IO Horizontal Logo
IO Horizontal Logo
VoLTE Roaming Facts and FAQ2022-06-03T12:05:30+02:00

VoLTE Roaming Facts and FAQ

This page is updated frequently with FAQ related to VoLTE Roaming, Decommissioning and 5G Roaming.

Why do we need to move to 4G and 5G?2022-06-01T12:40:17+02:00
  • Mobile technology has taken a big step forward as the 5th generation of mobile networks are being deployed.
  • The benefits of moving to 4G and 5G are innumerable and will enable telecom companies to offer critical services to both customers and businesses. 5G services will be fundamental to offer next generation of emergency services to our citizens. Amongst other applications this technology is set to revolutionised health services through connected health monitors, remote surgery, disaster relief, advanced warnings during accidents and emergencies.
  • To make the 5G vision a reality, it requires telecom operators to maximise the efficiency of how they use their limited spectrum resources.
  • The choice is simple: either provide the next generation of services, save and protect lives providing more security and advancing our society or simply carry on using critical spectrum required for this instead to continue to offer old 2G and 3G services severely compromising the roll out of 5G services.
How does decommissioning effect emergency calling?2022-06-01T12:25:20+02:00
  • As is always the case new technology brings in changes to services and how we use them. e.g. when we started using WiFi when travelling instead of roaming onto other mobile networks, we could not make or receive calls or dial emergency numbers. Similarly as 2G and 3G networks are decommissioned, depending on your mobile device you may perceive a difference in your experience when in comes to making an emergency call.
How do Emergency Calls work for VoLTE?2022-06-23T16:05:06+02:00
  • At the outset, it’s important to note that making an emergency call does not require a SIM card or a roaming agreement between your home network and the networks of the visited country. As long as your mobile device is compatible with the mobile networks in the visited country your phone has been designed such that even if you have no other services or your services have been disconnected by your service provider you’ll still be able to make emergency calls.
  • As mobile networks across the globe are shutting down their 2G/3G networks in order to provide a new generation of technology and services, all you need to do is ensure that when you travel, your mobile device is 4G and VoLTE (Voice over a 4G network) compliant. Most mobile handsets manufactured after 2015 are, but it’s always best to check with your provider.
  • Although at the time of writing this guidance most networks continue to have their 4G and 5G networks complimented with either a 2G or a 3G network but these are being decommissioned fast across the globe, so it’s always best to ensure your device is already VoLTE ready.
  • So that’s sorted, however when it comes to making other voice calls (not emergency calls), there are certain other factors that need to be taken into account.
Why do I need a VoLTE enabled mobile device?2022-06-01T13:28:12+02:00
  • Our world is about to be transformed by becoming hyper-connected and we will all benefit from the next generation of services that 5G will bring.
  • We are entering a new world where communication is so much more than just being able to make a phone call.
  • So when you are travelling abroad make sure you have a VoLTE enabled mobile device, this will ensure you can make emergency calls while travelling even if you have no other service or if the country you are visiting has no 2G/3G networks and only a 4G network.
  • Mobile networks across the globe are continuously retiring old 2G/3G networks to make way for next generation of services, so for making other voice calls, it’s important to check with your home network which services are available in the country you wish to travel to.
  • To be able to offer all services your home service provider also needs you to have a mobile device which is compatible with new services. So do make sure your mobile device is VoLTE compliant.
What is VoLTE?2022-06-02T11:20:25+02:00
VoLTE stands for Voice over LTE. Simply put it’s the mechanism through which we are able to make voice calls on a 4G (LTE) mobile network.
Why is a voice call over a 4G network different from a voice call on a 2G/3G network?2022-06-02T11:21:44+02:00
The 4th generation mobile networks are all IP networks. They do not use the old circuit switched technology that 2G and 3G networks use. The call is converted to data packets (the same as what is used for browsing the internet) that are then exchanged between the caller and the called party.
Why are Mobile Network Operators closing down their 2G and 3G networks?2022-06-02T11:22:46+02:00
To provide connectivity the Mobile networks depend on radio spectrum to be provided to them by the relevant national authorities. As there’s only a limited amount of spectrum available, operators have to use it as efficiently as possible. As they roll out new generation of services, it has become even more important that they use this spectrum wisely. Operators are thus having to close down 2G and 3G networks as these networks cannot offer the next generation of services but are using valueable spectrum to offer very low speeds and quality.
What are these next generation of services that 5G will be able to provide?2022-06-02T11:23:45+02:00
The benefits of moving to 5G are innumerable and will enable telecom companies to offer critical services to both customers and businesses. Amongst other applications this technology is set to revolutionised health services through connected health monitors, remote surgery, disaster relief, advanced warnings during accidents and emergencies.
What will be the impact of not closing down 2G/3G services?2022-06-02T11:25:42+02:00
The choice for Mobile Operators is simple: either provide the next generation of services, save and protect lives providing more security and advancing our society or simply carry on using critical spectrum required for this instead to continue to offer old 2G and 3G services severely compromising the roll out of 5G services.
How does the shut down of 2G/3G networks across the world impact my current roaming experience?2022-06-02T11:27:12+02:00
As is always the case new technology brings in changes to services and how we use them. e.g. when we use WiFi when travelling instead of roaming onto other mobile networks, we cannot  make or receive calls or dial emergency numbers. Similarly as 2G and 3G networks are decommissioned, depending on your mobile device you may perceive a difference in your experience when in comes to making a voice call.
While roaming abroad will I still be able to call emergency numbers, if there are no 2G or 3G networks in the country I’m visiting?2022-06-02T11:28:24+02:00
Making an emergency call does not even require a sim card or a roaming agreement between your home network and the networks of the visited country. As long as your mobile device is compatible with the mobile networks in the visited country your phone has been designed such that even if you have no other services or your services have been disconnected by your service provider you’ll still be able to make emergency calls. All you need to do is make sure that when your travel your mobile device is 4G and VoLTE (Voice over a 4G network) compliant. Most mobile handsets manufactured after 2015 are, but its always best to check with your provider.
Have all countries closed down their 2G and 3G networks?2022-06-02T11:29:25+02:00
Most countries still have operators offering a 2G or a 3G network in addition to a 4G or even a 5G network. However this is situation is very dynamic and in most countries Mobile Operators are in the process of shutting them down. It’s always best to check with your home mobile network as to which specific services you’ll be able to use.
Can I make VoLTE Roaming Calls?2022-06-02T13:35:55+02:00

Join the VoLTE Roaming Lab (MNOs only)

News from the VoLTE Roaming Lab

VoLTE Roaming Facts & FAQ

June 2nd, 2022|0 Comments

VoLTE Roaming Facts & FAQ The IO organisation’s mission is to help modernise the Roaming industry by bringing together Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), who through community, shared resources and common objectives ...

Innovative Operators forms its Executive Board

May 26th, 2022|0 Comments

Innovative Operators forms its Executive Board 26th May 2022 - Innovative Operators (IO) inaugural Executive Board meeting formally appointed Frédéric Schepens (CEO-MTN GlobalConnect) as Chairman of the Board. The Board also ...

Go to Top