China Mobile and Huawei say they have established a ‘New Calling Innovation Center’ to develop new use cases for 5G calls beyond standard voice by leveraging VoNR and IMS.
VoNR (Voice over New Radio) is the 3GPP standard that enables a 5G standalone network to route voice calls over its own core network, rather than an underlying LTE core. However, a VoNR call is still a standard voice call from the user’s perspective.
China Mobile is looking to spice up 5G voice calls with ‘VoNR+’, an architecture proposed by China Mobile Research Institute based on the 3GPP IMS data channel standard.
China Mobile says it has been collaborating with industry partners such as Huawei and iFLYTEK to develop what it’s billed as ‘New Calling’ services based on VoNR+. To date, these includes video calls with animated avatars, real-time translation, and speech-to-text conversion.
China Mobile said it has beta-tested such services in several provinces in China, and is now constructing a nationwide New Calling network. However, it added that New Calling’s success will requires an ecosystem of partners.
The New Calling Innovation Center, unveiled at the 11th China Mobile Global Partner Conference last week, will serve as a sandbox for operators, vendors, developers and enterprises to develop, test-drive and upgrade New Calling apps, as well as business models.
During the launch ceremony, China Mobile and Huawei placed an IMS data channel-based call using a Huawei Mate 60 Pro over a commercial New Calling network.