06.17.2015Personal Tech

Advanced Calling 1.0: Verizon Brings HD to Your Phone

This is a guest post from Shay Hazen, a Cleveland resident and blogger at Live Full Throttle. Read on as Shay shares her experience testing the new Advanced Calling 1.0 features. Disclaimer: We loaned Shay a HTC One M9 to test these features for this blog post.

One of the newest features on the Verizon Wireless network provides users the opportunity to enjoy HD-quality voice and video calls. I was lucky enough to try these features out with a fellow device reviewer during the time I used the HTC One M9.

In addition to the HD capabilities, Advanced Calling 1.0 gives users the ability to conduct conference calls with up to six individuals participating, and it ensures your 4G LTE Android device simultaneously gives you access to voice calling and use of your data features.

Do you have friends and family who live far away? Do you ever have those moments where you just close your eyes and wish that when you opened them, you’d be in the same room with them? Well, Verizon hasn’t quite perfected teleportation yet… but the company has introduced a very convincing HD voice feature. When you activate the Advanced Calling on your device, and then make a phone call* I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. I know I was.

While hanging out on Belle Isle for the Verizon IndyCar Series Chevrolet Dual in Detroit at the end of May, I realized it had been far too long since I talked to one of my best racing friends, Amy. I picked up my HTC One M9 and asked it to call Amy, which it did flawlessly thanks to the hands-free features! I put the receiver up to my ear, excited to hear what HD Calling sounded like – wow. Standard salutations like “Hey!” and “How are you?!” felt much more personal because it really sounded like she was sitting next to me. Amy even commented on how she felt like I was right in the room with her, and she was hours away in Cincinnati, OH!

We chatted for awhile and when she joked about “missing my face,” I suggested we try out the HD video calling so we could see one another. We were able to switch from a phone call to a video call with one simple touch-screen button. We did what most career-driven, perfectionistic women in their 30’s do when they haven’t seen one of their best buds in two months—made goofy faces, speak in random accents and basically act like we were the age of Amy’s kid, Gage (who is nine, by the way, and is probably more mature than us).

The only thing to critique about the Advanced Calling features is how the video occasionally freezes up. The audio continues flawlessly, but the screen will freeze, leaving the caller’s face motionless. Amy agreed this was really the only thing that still needs to be worked on, and she loved how face-to-face calls are now available on Android devices and not just iOS.

Advanced Calling is a very impressive feature and it’s cool to think that down the line, this kind of clarity will be an expected feature and not an extra capability. The nice thing, however, is it doesn’t cost extra. The HD voice calling is included in your voice plan and billed as standard minutes - you simply have to make sure you have it added on to your account on My Verizon and activated on your device through Settings. The HD video call portion is billed through your data, with one minute of video time equating to roughly 6-8 MB.

I hope you have a chance to try out Advanced Calling with a friend or family member like I did. HD has already become the standard: with television in our homes, radio in our cars and now Advanced Calling through our mobile devices, so we have it no matter where we opt to venture next.

*Remember that you must be calling a user who also has a compatible Verizon 4G LTE Android device with Advanced Calling activated, in order for the features to work.

For more Verizon Wireless news, subscribe via RSS feeds in the right rail.