Video-Calling Could Be A Boon To Big Telecom

Telecom carriers around the globe believe that in LTE, or 4G -- which is anticipated to become the first truly global mobile phone standard -- a “gold mine” could be waiting for them in the form of video-calling. The Verge’s Chris Ziegler, reporting from the International CTIA Wireless conference in New Orleans, says that even before the industry confab, a number of carriers -- including AT&T -- had called for a unified video-calling protocol on 4G, and that “the buzz wasn't any quieter at CTIA last week.”

Neville Ray, chief technology officer, T-Mobile USA, said: "I think (video-calling is) more of a growth area -- an opportunity. I think the interesting piece about video calling is that was the killer app for 3G... of course, the quality in the early 3G days was just not there. I think with 4G, improvements in the network, improvements in the handsets, video-calling is clearly a growing opportunity."

Terry McCabe, chief technology officer of LTE services specialist Mavenir Systems, agreed: "Video is where it's at in terms of where the operators believe that LTE has a tremendous differentiation." This is particularly true for the carriers, added co-worker Madan Jagernauth, vice president of marketing and strategy. Unlike say, Skype, which is an over-the-top video-calling solution, the carriers can offer a “one-stop shop” for communication, allowing users to dial any number and choose from voice, video or messaging, depending on their preference and the recipient’s hardware and network capabilities. 

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