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Ericsson places first HD call over CDMA

The feat, which took place in a lab environment, bodes a higher quality of sound for calls over CDMA networks. But Ericsson isn't saying when the capability might reach consumers.

Telecommunications company Ericsson has placed what it calls the first-ever HD call over a CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) network.

HD calling, also known as wideband audio, has been available in Europe for some time over different network technology. Rather than calls being placed over the current 300Hz to 3400Hz spectral range, HD calls run on the 50Hz to 7000Hz spectral range. The result is a much higher quality of sound that improves fidelity of the human voice, which ranges from 80Hz to 14,000Hz. HD voice calls use the Enhanced Variable Rate Codec Narrowband-Wideband codec.

"This is the starting point of a voice quality revolution that will significantly enhance CDMA networks as we know them today," Surya Bommakanti, the vice president of Ericsson's Product Area Core, BU CDMA Mobile Systems, said in a statement yesterday.

Ericsson has been focusing efforts on HD calling for quite some time. Last year, the company rolled out HD voice over carrier Orange's commercial network in Barcelona during the Mobile World Congress. However, that service was running over High Speed Packet Access (HSPA), not CDMA.

HD voice technology is also available over Orange's network in the U.K., among a few other countries. Orange U.K.'s improved call quality can be accessed from the HTC Desire HD, Nokia N8, and Samsung Omnia 7, among other devices. However, HD calling is only available when both the call recipient and caller have HD-compatible phones.

Ericsson's HD call over CDMA was done in a lab environment, and the company did not say when it plans to launch the service in the wild.