A typical telephone call these days still relies on quality limitations of compression and filtering designed in the 1960s! Before VoIP, the percentage of such calls would have been 100. For a short time thereafter, VoIP calls may have even sounded worse in some cases than the PSTN – the 1960s technology I referenced.
Fast forward to about 20 years after VoIP was launched and we live in a world of HD voice potential. The sad part is many conference rooms still have conference phone units designed for 1960s technology - or they have been upgraded slightly.
Revolabs takes a different approach. They have an entire line of conferencing phones designed to excel in the audio quality department. Products have wide frequency response and separate drivers for mid-low and high-range. Moreover, they are powered, meaning they can pump out 15W of sound with frequency response of 160Hz-20Khz, filling your conference room with sound.
I had a chance to meet with Priti Mendiratta and Randi Lee recently to learn about how the company has displaced the competition as an OEM for a large networking company I've been asked not to mention due to contractual secrecy obligations. In other other news, the company's devices are moving upmarket with the UC 1500 which allows for two directional microphones and ships this summer.
Priti Mendiratta shows off the UC 1000
The units vary in price and capacity depending on features needed by your organization. For example the UC 500 is USB-only, the UC 1000 (started shipping just 2 months ago) adds SIP. The UC 1500 is also a full VoIP phone.
In short, HD voice support is growing. VoLTE is just one reason for this… Although in many cases, carriers make it difficult to turn this feature on - you need to call Verizon each time you want to activate this feature… In everyday use on the Verizon network, the benefits of VoLTE certainly do outweigh the drawbacks.
In other words, without VoLTE turned on, users cannot use an iPhone’s data while on a phone call. This can be quite frustrating. VoLTE solves this problem but I am convinced almost no one knows about it. Over time, this will change and Verizon will likely turn the feature on across many of its devices in the future.
Obviously we'll also need to address HD Voice federation at some point but that's a topic for another article.
Digressions aside, we all know conference phone quality is inferior to even relatively inexpensive bluetooth speakers. Moreover, many of us have had to deal with voice quality issues on conference calls.
For these and other reasons, we can expect many companies to focus more on their conferencing products and services and Revolabs, a division of Yamaha hopes to help supply these upgrades for your organization.
Disclosure: Revolabs owns a sponsored community on TMCnet (where I am CEO) called Conferencing Zone whose goal is to provide comprehensive news and information on the conferencing market for those looking to purchase such products.