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1 September 10

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Crystal clear calling as Orange revolutionises UK mobile phone calls with the launch of High Definition Voice

  • Orange becomes the first operator to launch mobile HD Voice in the UK, signalling the dawn of a new era in mobile communications for customers
  • HD Voice reduces background noise and decreases perceived distance between callers by providing crystal clear calls
  • HD Voice is available from today nationwide at no extra cost for all Orange customers with an HD voice enabled handset

Orange today announced the first major advancement in UK mobile voice calling for 20 years with the launch of mobile High Definition (HD) Voice. Providing crystal clear sound quality for calls, mobile users will see the service set a new consumer benchmark, with today’s move testament to Orange’s continuing focus on innovation.

HD Voice offers a proven improvement in the sound quality of traditional mobile voice calls. The service eliminates the distance between friends, relatives and colleagues to make callers voices sound like they do when communicating face to face.  Reducing the background noise, hisses and crackles of normal mobile calls, HD Voice also excels in noisy environments, so whether you’re at a football match or concert, on a building site or next to heavy traffic - HD Voice gives louder, clearer, sharper mobile calls.  This will come as a relief for a third (32%) of Brits who blame background noise including road works or noisy chatty friends as the biggest disturbance in conversations*.

Orange HD Voice is available at no extra cost to all Orange mobile customers who take a HD Voice enabled handset. From launch, new variants of the Nokia 5230, Nokia X6, Nokia E5 and Samsung Omnia Pro will be HD Voice enabled with further manufactures expected to offer HD handsets in the coming months. All HD Voice enabled handsets will be labelled with the Orange HD Voice logo, helping customers to easily recognise those devices that support the new Orange HD Voice service.  HD Voice demonstration units will also be available in Orange shops.

Tom Alexander, Chief Executive of Everything Everywhere, the company which runs Orange UK, said:  “Although what we use our mobile handsets for has evolved significantly in the past few years - the way we make mobile calls hasn’t changed a great deal since the 1990s. So we’re proud to be the first telecommunications brand in the UK to change this and offer customers a revolutionary new calling experience. With mobile HD Voice - hearing really is believing”.

HD Voice also opens up new opportunities for better ways of working in business. The arrival of HD Voice is hotly anticipated by the broadcasting industry, which believes that the service could reduce its reliance on expensive ISDN lines and the need to ferry guests to studios for interviews. Other industries that will benefit significantly from HD Voice include those with significant background noise like the construction and manufacturing industries.

For more information on HD Voice from Orange, please visit: www.orange.co.uk/hdvoice

 


 

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Notes to editors

 Imagery, spokespeople and b-roll audio and visual footage is available from orange.co.uk/newsroom

HD Voice runs on the 3G network and uses the WB-AMR (Wideband Adaptive Multi-Rate) speech codec. This provides excellent audio quality due to a wider speech bandwidth of 50–7000 Hz compared to the current narrowband speech codec of 300–3400 Hz. The WB-AMR (Wideband Adaptive Multi-Rate) delivers significantly enhanced sound quality while utilising the same network resource.

The UK launch builds on the launch of HD Voice by Orange in Moldova, where it has become the first operator in the world to offer the service, as well as in Armenia and France

*Research conducted by Opinion Matters between 13/08/2010 and 16/08/2010.  Sample: 1,001 adults

About Orange UK

Orange is the key brand of the France Telecom Group, one of the world's leading telecommunications operators. With 131.8 million customers, the Orange brand now covers Internet, television and mobile services in the majority of countries where the Group operates.

In the UK, Orange provides high quality GSM coverage to 99% of the UK population, and 3G coverage to more than 93%. At the end of March 2010, Orange had more than 17.305 million customers in the UK - 16.442 million active mobile customers and approximately 863,000 fixed line internet customers.

Orange and any other Orange product or service names included in this material are trade marks of Orange Brand Services Limited.

On July 1 2010, the company became part of Everything Everywhere, one company that runs two of Britain's most famous brands - Orange UK and T-Mobile UK - with plans to transform the industry by giving customers instant access to everything, everywhere, offering them the best value, best choice and best network coverage in the country. Everything Everywhere Limited is registered at Hatfield Business Park, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9BW under the registered company number 02382161.

For more information please call the Orange Press Office 0870 3731500

Press release: Products & ServicesMobile

Engadget.com on the launch of HD Voice

BBC's Rory Cellan Jones on Orange HD Voice

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