HD Voice calls launched on Three.

Here at Three we’re always looking for ways to improve our customer’s experience on our network. Whether it’s all-you-can-eat data, one month rolling contracts or 4G technology.

By now some of you may have heard about (and experienced!) High Definition voice calls and we’re really excited that it’s now been rolled out on Three. You have to hear it to believe it, but the difference in call quality is pretty amazing, almost completely eliminating background noise.

We launched HD voice calls onto our network at the end of May and we’ve already had some great feedback.

The technology, which is currently only available on 3G networks, dramatically improves the quality and clarity of voice calls, making it easier to hear the person you’re talking to.

This service is the first step-change in voice quality to hit mobile users since the introduction of digital technology, and it’s free on our network.

Hundreds of thousands of HD calls have already been made on Three since we completed the rollout, and we’re expecting that figure to continue to rise.

The technology works by opening up the phone’s audio range, allowing it to capture and transmit sounds across a wider band of frequencies making HD Voice calls sound clearer and more natural compared to a standard mobile or land line call.

There are three phones on Three that already come with HD voice enabled. So for those of you that have a Nokia C7, E7 or N8 you may have already experienced HD voice calls. Many other phones will support the technology by the end of this autumn, including for example the Nokia X7.

As HD voice calls are still new to us they’re only available between people on the Three network, and both the caller and the receiver need to have an HD Voice equipped phone. We are also looking to roll out cross-operator calls in the future. As soon as we can let you know more on this, we will.

Let us know if any of you have experienced a HD Voice call yet :-)

89 Responses to HD Voice calls launched on Three.
  1. Moderator: Claire

    @Ash – Hi, does the other person you are calling have the HD voice facility? Thanks.

  2. ash

    Trying to get HD voice even though my phone is compatible.

    Worked for a week and then stopped!

    Fantastic!

  3. Moderator: Allan

    @Lee – This isn’t very likely, sorry

  4. lee

    Will home signal boxes ever be able to support HD Voice calls ?.

  5. Moderator: Nicki

    @TonyLambu – Hi there, what phone do you have? Remember both parties will need an HD enabled phone for the HD calls to work.

  6. TonyLambu

    Not experienced HD calls yet :(

  7. Moderator: Nicki

    @AJE – More info on HD voice and what phones you can use can be found here.

  8. AJE

    Is the NOKIA Lumia 800 (unlocked) able to make HD calls?

  9. Moderator: Nicki

    @Dmitri – Thanks for the great feedback, glad it’s all working out well :-)

  10. Dmitri

    I have started to recieve HD calls from other 3 users after getting my new HTC One phone and can say the quality is amazing.

  11. Moderator: Nicki

    @Simon P – Hi, as the iPhone is unbranded HD voice will indeed work with the iPhone 5.

  12. Simon P

    And what is my answer to the real question re my apple bought iPhone 5?

  13. Moderator: Johanna

    @Simon P – Oops, not sure what happened there! We are indeed still offering HD Voice on a growing number of devices!

  14. Simon P

    Eh? But this blog is about the launch of HD voice?!!!! So are you saying that Three has now stopped doing it all together??!

  15. Ellie

    @Simon – Hi Simon, I have responded to your previous post on HD voice.

  16. Ellie

    @Simon – Hi there, I’m afraid we can’t track this request ID from here. HD voice isn’t something that we’re offering at the present time, we’ll be sure to let our customers know if this changes in future.

  17. Simon

    Further to my question, I asked support (tracking ref A00007407859-00021634562) and I gave up talking to the techy. He knew nothing of HD voice. Three really could make capital of this but it seems to limit it to phones purchased from Three themselves???

  18. Simon

    Your website states that a phone needs to originate from Three (http://www.three.co.uk/Discover/Network/What_is_HD_Voice) so does that mean my iphone 5 bought from apple direct won’t work with HD voice on Three??? Seems bizarre as the phone should be the same. Can you confirm if your website is correct please. Very disappointing if true. Thanks, Simon

  19. Ellie

    @Tom – Yes we do, these devices are:
    Nokia Asha 300
    Nokia Asha 302
    Nokia C3-01
    Nokia C7
    Nokia E7
    Nokia N8
    Nokia X7

  20. Tom

    Do you offer any Nokia mobiles that support HD Voice at the moment?

  21. Ros

    @James Body – Indeed it will :-)

  22. James Body

    What about the iPhone 5? Will that support HD Voice on the 3UK network when I get my shiny new iPhone on Friday?

  23. Moderator: Lauren

    @Matthew – in order to use HD voice, you’ll need to have a compatible phone on Three and same with the recipient, which may have been what happened to you previously.

  24. Matthew

    Firstly, thanks for pushing technology forwards! It’s great news about HD Voice. Mobiles have needed better quality for a while. Glad to see you making it happen.

    I swear I had an HD Voice call 2 months back as I had a call with unexpectedly high sound quality. Since I wasn’t expecting it, it weirded me out a bit at the time. It was too clear for a phone call.

    The thing is I’ve not had an HD Voice call since then (I’ve not called the same person back and it wouldn’t be appropriate) and I don’t know what’s going on.

    This is something I’ve decided I really want, but I’ve no way of testing it, measuring it or even showing it to other people.

    HD Voice is like some strange mystery thing that when the planets are in alignment, and you’re calling someone on the right network, in the right area, with the right phone, who has the right blood group, it works.

    Any advice, tips or help on this? I wouldn’t even be sure my phone was capable of it if it wasn’t for the fact I have heard it do it once. (I’ve since found AMR-WB listed in the phones specs)

    A test line for HD Voice that anyone could ring would be really cool. They’d be able to show off their HD Voice phones to their friends and family that way, who might then want one.

    Love your network, can’t wait for LTE.

  25. Moderator: Kaz

    @Jon C – We do have a list of handsets that are HD compatible on our network. Unfortunately I can’t distribute the list, but can check a particular phone for you.

  26. Jon C

    I have to add to the comments about 3 store staff having no knowledge of HD voice. I tried several stores and none new anything about handset support, most hadn’t even heard of it. In the end I bought unlocked second hand Orange phones (E5) which work fine in HD on 3, however the 3 Galaxy Ace is NOT HD compatible, despite the Orange version being the case. As a result it’s impossible to recommend any three phone as the compatibility is unknown. In addition, I have never called another 3 subscriber (I know quite a few) and got an HD connection, so I’m suspecting most 3 branded handsets are NOT HD. Is there an official list? Would it not be possible to put a little logo on the website next to HD models?

    Also, I notice that T-Mobile and Orange customers can now make HD calls between each other. Any news when us mere 3 users will be able to call them in HD? :-)

  27. Bill

    BT tried this on their short-lived Broadband Talk service. It never caught on.

  28. Moderator: Johanna

    @Richard – Thanks for highlighting the lack of knowledge about HD Voice, we will share your feedback with the relevant teams.

  29. Moderator: Johanna

    @Richard – We haven’t abandoned HD Voice. Is there a particular handset you’re interested in and I’ll check it for you?

  30. Richard

    This is sheer hypeware from Three as NOBODY and I mean nobody at their shops or call centres know anything about HD voice and claim this service has never been and certainly now is no longer available on Three…so any pure Three fantasy.

  31. Richard

    None of the staff working at Three seems to know about HD voice. I rang on 4 occasions to find out the latest handsets using HD voice and they said they do not have such a service. I get without any announcement Three has now abandoned HD voice and this is only a year after which they launch it with such aplomb.

  32. Moderator: Lauren

    @Tim – are the phone’s you’re using Three branded or unlocked?

  33. Tim

    I’m using HD-Voice compatible phones that work in HD-Voice with Orange SIMs when I call from one phone to the other.

    When I insert ‘Three’ SIMs (All you can eat 300 minutes PAYG £15) and I dial from one phone to another, all In get is standard GSM quality. Can you help?

  34. Moderator: Nicki

    @Sandy York – Hi there, if you’re having issues with your coverage then please advise us of your full postcode (we won’t publish it) and we can check for any faults, work being carried out or forthcoming improvements in your area.

  35. Sandy York

    As usual three are making a complete hash of everything.The signal everywhere is crap.The phones especially the Samsung are rubbish and to make matters worse if you do need technical help you get put through to someone in India who hasntgot the first clue what the xxxx you are talking about.Utter rubbish

  36. Moderator: Lauren

    @pauled – Sensation, One S, One X, One V, Sensation XE, Desire HD, Sensation XL, Desire S, Desire C, Optimus 3D, 300, 302, C3-01, C7, E7, N8, X7 ,Galaxy Mini II, Cetus, Galaxy S II Mini, Galaxy S II, Arc, Arc S, Live ,Xperia S, Xperia U. Some of these may only work subject to a software update.

  37. pauled

    Hi, do you have an up to date list of supported handsets. Thanks :)

  38. Moderator: Johanna

    @Scott – It should just be making the sound on your calls far clearer with no background noise. What issue are you having?

  39. Scott

    I called three today to ask if hd voice can be turned off and they didn’t know what I was talking about !? Am I the only one who don’t like it ?

  40. Moderator

    @Tom – We currently don’t have any Blackberry’s that support HD calls. You would need to have a Three branded phone for this to be compatible as generic software may not have this feature enabled on it.

  41. Tom Jones

    Are there any BlackBerry’s that support this feature? Also, do we still have to buy a 3 branded handset if we want to make HD calls or can we now make HD calls from generic handsets?

  42. Moderator: Sedge

    @ Tom Jones – Yes, the majority of HTC smartphones support this feature; the HTC Sensation, the HTC One S & X, Sensation XE & XL and finally the Desire S & Desire HD.

  43. Tom Jones

    Thanks for letting me know Kaz.

    Do you have any Android phones by HTC that support this feature?

  44. Moderator: Kaz

    @Tom Jones – I’m afraid you can not make 3 to 3 HD voice calls on the Nokia Lumia 800 yet. We don’t have a list of phones, you’ll just have to ask I’m afraid.

  45. Tom Jones

    Is it possible to make HD voice calls using the Nokia Lumia 800?

    Also, is there an easy way we can browse through all the available HD voice enabled mobile phones on the Three store?

  46. Aadilh

    It was great using hd voice from my n8 to a friend on his galaxy s2, we’ve needed this technology for a long time. I remember gsm call quality could be set way back with those old Nokia phones so it’s nice to see some real improvement for users. might this also improve calls to landlines in the future?

    I tired hd voice on the galaxy s & i8910 but it didn’t work although i’m sure these phones are more than capable.

    Any chance this visual voicemail will bring back voicemail data access via planet three?

  47. Moderator: Kaz

    @Ed GOuld – I’m afraid HD voice calls are not available for the iPhone 4s and we have investigated bringing Visual Voicemail to Thee and have decided not to progress with this feature at the current time. Sorry I couldn’t give you more positive news.

  48. Ed GOuld

    Is HD voice available on the iPhone 4S, and is 3 ever looking to have visual voicemail on the iPhone?

  49. Moderator: Johanna

    @Jason – I’m afraid it isn’t :-(

  50. jason

    Is this available on galaxy ace? Thanks in advance :)

  51. Moderator: Kaz

    @Luke I’m afraid this does not work on the iPhone. Sorry

  52. Luke Stevens

    Does this now work on the iPhone?

  53. Moderator: Sedge

    @ Raymond – Yeah, it’s been enabled for a few months now :)

  54. Raymond

    Is HD voice working on the Xperia Arc yet? :)

  55. Moderator: Johanna

    @SarahP – It is indeed, you must be calling another HD voice enabled phone.

  56. SarahP

    Was this ever enabled on the Galaxy S2? Thanks

  57. Moderator: Kaz

    @Marcel – There is not any additional details about the feature at the moment. Sorry. Glad you like it though!

  58. Marcel

    Just noticed that HD voice has been enabled and calls between Nokia N8 on pays as you go was NOTICABLE better sound then N8 BT.

    Well done guys.

    Is there a more technical detailed information about this feature?

  59. Moderator: Johanna

    @Ro – Yep it’s enabled and should work automatically if you’re calling a person with another enabled device on our 3G network.

  60. Ro

    The Samsung Omnia 7 has the HD Voice feature, but is it ‘enabled’? Does it even have to be enabled or should it just work if I’m calling someone else on Three with a HD Voice equipped handset?

  61. Moderator: Johanna

    @Sergio De Gregorio – Thanks for letting us know and glad you enjoyed good HD calling! :-)

  62. Sergio De Gregorio

    Tested N8 to N8. The quality is great! Well done!!!!!

  63. Moderator: Sedge

    @ Andrew – We can’t confirm the phone’s that’ll be HD voice compatible at the moment I’m afraid.

  64. Andrew

    I’ve seen a few articles online that suggest the HTC desire supports amr-wb. Does this mean it will be joining the list of hd voice compatible phones?

  65. Moderator: Sedge

    @ Ibrahim Gucukoglu – I’ve taken a look at your postcode, there’s quite a bit of work going on in the area and there’s planned masts coming your way so you should start to see an improvement in your area. I can’t be specific with the timings of the new masts but if you want to know more 333 will be able to help :-)

  66. Moderator: Sedge

    @ Ibrahim Gucukoglu – It has to be a phone that originated from Three as you’re unable to update their software to Three software if it’s a generic handset. If it’s generic it’s possible that the HD Voice feature won’t be enabled.

  67. Ibrahim Gucukoglu

    Secondly, could you just give me a coverage report on my postcode PE1 [Removed by mod]? I’m getting no signal at all on my E7 indoors, yet when I step outside I get a floorless 7 bars. I’ve had this issue with Nokia before and was promised network improvement in my area, this was back in 2010. I even had a contract cancelled because of it.

  68. Ibrahim Gucukoglu

    Hi Mod. Before I coerce a friend in to trialling this HD voice technology with me on my E7, I just want to check a couple of things. Firstly, does it have to be one of the listed phones on the Three network, or can it be an unlocked unbranded handset with a Three sim?

  69. Moderator: Kaz

    @Mo Bility – Thanks for supplying your postcode. There is patchy coverage in your area at the moment and I can’t see any plans to improve reception. However, we are constantly improving our network so there may be planned improvements for later in the year, but I can’t confirm this.

  70. Mo Bility

    @Mod: Kaz, (removed by mod) Thats my actual workplace post code where there is no Three coverage at all.

  71. Moderator: Kaz

    @AJE – That’s correct, no need to change any settings, when you make a call to another phone with HD voice calls on the Three network it will automatically be in HD.

  72. AJE

    Is it the case that I don’t need to do anything to my N8 from the settings it had when I got it, that the HD quality justkicks in when I make a call to other phones on the list on the Three network? Or do I have to select an HD option on the menu somewhere?

  73. Moderator: Kaz

    @ahmad – could be some temporary issues in your area, can you supply your postcode and I will check.

  74. Moderator: Kaz

    @scott – sounds like there may be an issue with you phone, it may be wise to get our repair center to take a look, just give them a call on 333.

  75. Moderator: Kaz

    @Mo Bility – Sorry to hear that, if you send over your postcode I can check for issues and future plans in you area. Regarding HD voice calls, we are just saying that you can use this great new service for free.

  76. Ahmad

    Is that why i have started loosing signals when im home???
    When ever Im home i find my iphone searching for network…

  77. scott

    I have an N8 and all i get is an echo not HD calling :(

  78. Mo Bility

    What does Three mean by ” it’s free on our network ” surely you were not expecting people to sign-up to HD Voice Call were you? for all I know as long as the other person at the end of the other line can hear and understand what I am saying, then whats is the fuss about?

    What I actually care about is for Three to sort out coverage problems in Andover SP7 post code area where I work because once I get to work that’s the end of coverage for me whereas other networks get coverage in the same area.

  79. Nigel Jones

    Nice to see a step forward made here!

  80. Bernard

    I do lots of phone interviews and I have to record and transcribe the calls. This new tech would be AMAZING for me. Please roll out to HTC as soon as humanly possible.

  81. Ibrahim Gucukoglu

    Wow, this is a dream come true. I’ve just got myself the E7 as it happens, I’ve now just got to find someone else with the E7 or N8 or whatever the other phone was and of course they’ll have to be on Three and we’ll be sailing away. Anyone happy to give me a trial run? *smile*. On a serious note, I did see the BBC’s tech corispondant Rorey demonstrating this on Orange and it sounded pritty darn cool.

  82. Moderator

    @liam – just the ones in the blog post at the moment :-).

  83. liam

    what no iphone?

  84. stew

    Shame, I misread the title and thought it was going to be an announcement to tell of the roll out of VIDEO calling. Skype on 3 would be perfect if it had that. Shame the skype app is vastly inferior

  85. Moderator

    @Weasley Shum & Jaber Ahmed – HD Voice is only available on the phones we’ve mentioned in our blog post at the moment, but it will be available on others (both old and new) in the future. When we know for sure what those will be we’ll let you know!

  86. Jaber Ahmed

    What about Samsung Galaxy S2??

  87. Weasley Shum

    Does Galaxy S2 have the HD Voice enable already?

  88. Dan C

    well done Three, yet again rolling out technology to improve the network and customer experiance. Now all we need is HSPA+ and we have super fast speeds with crystal clear calls.

    Thunbs up!!

  89. Abul

    I tried the HD stuff out at Three HQ back in 2010. The difference in quality is staggering.

    Brilliant!

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