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Orange rolls out HD Voice calls in UK

New phones required

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Desperately unhappy with the call quality of the your mobile phone? Orange reckons its HD Voice service is the answer.

You'll need a new phone, of course - Orange has the Nokia 5230, Nokia X6, Nokia E5 and Samsung Omnia Pro in its line of HD Voice-branded handsets. Once you've bought one of these, the HD Voice service is free, Orange said.

What makes the call HD is the use of the WB-AMR (Wideband Adaptive Multi-Rate) speech codec to encode voice signals which are then pinged out over the 3G network - so you'll need 3G coverage to use it and, of course, a phone at the other end capable of decoding WB-AMR.

And since WB-AMR requires a network upgrade to support it, you chums' phones need to be on Orange too.

WB-AMR works by digitising and compressing audio in the 50-7000Hz band. Regular phone codecs work between 300Hz and 3400Hz. It's part of the 3GPP 3G mobile phone standard.

According to Orange, the upshot is "louder, clearer, sharper mobile calls" even "at a football match or concert, on a building site or next to heavy traffic". ®

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