TPG’s upcoming 4G network won’t do voice calls at launch

TPG 4G netowrk

TPG is doing everything it can to get its new 4G network up and running later this year but, as the Australian Financial Review reports, it will launch without Voice over Long-Term Evolution (VoLTE) capabilities – the technology for making traditional voice calls.

Instead, says Craig Levy, the telco’s chief operating officer, users will need to use a voice over internet protocol (VoIP) service, meaning calls will need to be made via third-party apps such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Viber or Skype.

“We’ve decided to go to data in the beginning,” Mr Levy told the AFR, with a promise that traditional voice calls over the mobile network will still be made available in the future.

Don’t hang up just yet

While TPG might be a junior player in Australia's mobile network market, the company is hoping to shake things up by offering free six-month trials and data plans that start from just $10 a month.

“We wouldn’t be going down the path we are, if that didn’t make financial sense. This is the first product… it also means down the line, we’ve got other things planned,” he said.

Mr Levy has also indicated that TPG has plans to expand the new network into regional areas, although the rollout will initially focus on major metropolitan centres. 

“When you look at the offer we’ve put together, it gives us an opportunity to fine tune the network along the way, get a lot of feedback from the people who are using it free of charge… that’s why the free period needs to be a win-win for the company and our customers,” he added.

[Via The Australian Financial Review]