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Telenor improves indoor coverage

Press Release   •   Jun 28, 2016 06:30 BST

(Fornebu, 28 June 2016) Poor indoor coverage will soon be history. Telenor has begun the roll out of WiFi Voice, which makes it possible to use your mobile to make calls via wireless networks (WiFi). The Norwegian University of Science and Technology is the first company to have tried out the new technology.

Mobile coverage has never been better in Norway, but the nation’s buildings have also never been better insulated. This is something that many people with offices in modern buildings have experienced all too painfully. Many buildings are insulated and constructed in such a way that mobile signal cannot penetrate through to the indoor areas.

‘I’ve been on countless client visits and inspections to investigate poor indoor coverage, and in many meetings with the construction industry to find solutions in terms of material use and building technique. Up until now, measures to provide better indoor coverage have been not only demanding, but also very expensive. Finally, we’ve tried out WiFi Voice, and I’m delighted to say that anyone struggling with poor indoor coverage will be thrilled,’ says Bjørn Amundsen, Director of Coverage at Telenor. 

Ready from day one
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is one of the pilot customers who have been testing WiFi Voice. Previously, both students and staff were struggling to communicate with the surrounding world from multiple dead zones in the university. 

‘Our personnel and students have been complaining about indoor coverage for years. Local improvements have taken a long time with the technology currently available. When we got to try out the mobile calling over WiFi, it provided clear calls from the word go,’ says Terje Buseth, a Department Manager at NTNU.

In purely technical terms, WiFi Voice is a solution that makes it possible for your mobile to interchange seamlessly between the 4G network and the WiFi network. This takes place without any interruption to calls or you having to do anything when you move from outdoors into a building with poor indoor coverage. 

‘We used to have to go to an area with good enough coverage and stand there until the call was over, but now we can come and go without thinking about our mobile coverage. I think many people who struggle with indoor coverage will save time and frustration once WiFi Voice becomes available to all,’ says Terje Buseth. 

10 per cent of all complaints
WiFi Voice will initially be available on the Sony Z5, and the technology that makes it possible to switch between WiFi and the 4G mobile network will be available on brands and models during the course of the year. 

10 per cent of inquiries to Telenor customer services concern poor or completely absent indoor coverage, and businesses have faced particular challenges when building new office buildings. 

‘For Norwegian businesses that are focussed on both the financial and environmental elements of their build through the use of good insulation, but who are naturally dependent on excellent communication, WiFi Voice has been long sought after. We are naturally very pleased to be the first operator to offer this, and look forward to the technology soon being available on all mobiles,’ says Ove Fredheim, CMO Business at Telenor.

Facts about WiFi Voice
• WiFi Voice is the only service available via the 4G voice platform and ensures that customers can make calls and send text messages as usual via WiFi networks in Norway - there is no need to download an app.

• It is possible to switch between the 4G network and WiFi, but not with the 2G/3G network. Telenor is expanding 4G to all locations with 2G and 3G, and work should be complete during the course of 2017. A seamless handover to 4G ensures that you have no interruptions to you calls when moving from an area with 4G coverage into a zone with poor or no mobile coverage whatsoever, and vice versa. 

• WiFi access will provide access to the mobile network even when there is no mobile coverage. 

• There is no limit to which WiFi networks in Norway can be used, but it is important the wireless network offers good capacity.

• The service is included in customers’ mobile subscriptions, and the traffic will use their calling allowance, just as it does for 2G/3G. 

• In order to activate WiFi Voice, you must have a mobile that supports the technology. Read more at telenor.no

For further information, please contact:
Per Aril Meling, PR Manager at Telenor Norway
Tel.: 905 15 800, per-aril.meling@telenor.com

About Telenor Norway

Telenor Norway is the biggest supplier of mobile and network services in Norway.

We deliver services within telephony, broadband and cable TV  through our mobile and fixed network all over Norway. We also provide our services to other telecom operators.

We have 4200 employees in over 30 workplaces all over Norway, including Svalbard.