CDMA Development Group Announces 'SVDO': Handle Calls and Data at same time

Here's an interesting development. The CDMA Development Group (CDG) just announced its "CDMA2000 1x Advanced Specifications", which appears to be a significant optional upgrade for EV-DO networks (Sprint and Verizon here in the U.S.).

One of these advances allows networks to increase voice capacity on their existing systems by taking advantage of  "...several interference cancellation and radio link enhancements. Among these improvements are base transceiver station (BTS) interference cancellation, improved power control, early frame termination, and smart blanking".  Whatever that means.

Perhaps even more impressive for customers is the creation of SVDO which is simultaneous 1X Voice and EV-DO Data. Unlike GSM, EV-DO cannot do both right now, so our 3G data connection becomes interrupted during calls. We also can't take advantage of "live" services like caller-ID look-up programs (like 'True Caller').

Unfortunately, no word from Sprint or Verizon on whether they would take advantage of this new advancement.  From the details, it looks like they can do this piecemeal or all-at-once, offering networks options for updating their existing technology. 

Perhaps if we shout loud enough, they'll hear us?

Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days. Subscribe to the Modern Dad newsletter!

  • Do we want them to hear us? I am pretty excited that the current CDMA carriers in Canada are deploying their HSDPA networks and planning an upgrade to LTE. I think that is a better move than upgrading their current CDMA networks.
  • I dunno. LTE doesn't do voice or SMS either, much like WiMax. So while it is good for data rates (just like WiMax for Sprint), I'm not sure what advantage there is for you know...voice/sms. In other words, until we see how this CDMA 1x/LTE hybrid works, it might be EXACTLY how CDMA 1x/EV-DO is right now--independent circuits with no simultaneous ability. Plus, this update seems beneficial for networks for "quadrupling" their voice capacity, which once again LTE has nothing to do with.
  • Unless, of course, the carriers opt to ram the voice down the data channel, VOIP style.
  • I agree with Malatesta..... Adding more voice coverage is awesome. Data coverage will be handled by Wimax, LTE, etc... But voice coverage expansion is awesome! +1 for this!
  • Would this work with current EVDO handsets with a infrastructure upgrade? Or would it also need upgraded handsets on the client side to take advantage of the new feature?
  • Jonathan; I am not 100% sure, but I believe this would work with current handsets, as this is more of a tower thing. I could be wrong, but that's that way it read's to me.
  • I say forget this SVDO crap and get with the program to develop LTE. Yes, right now LTE is suppose to support data only, but there are those in the industry that are trying to push a standard solution to voice over LTE. Meaning, LTE to support data and voice. It is in our (the consumers) best interest to push carriers to support a standard LTE with voice and data. Imagine being able to roam your VZW phone on an ATT tower (and vice versa) when you are in a dead spot. Imagine all VZW and Sprint phones as a world phone. You can use it in almost any country outside the US. Currently only ATT, T-Mo,other GSM, and CDMA world phones enjoy this feature. We need to support a world-wide standard. No more, this phone's radio can only be used on CDMA or GSM or WiMax. Screw that! It keeps us locked down and in the mercy of our current service provider. No more exclusivity! I want to be able to use my phone on any carrier I want. Just like I can use my Laptop to connect to any ISP I want.
  • I hear ya, but unfortunately it doesn't seem to be happening that way. Verizon is pushing 'CS Fallback' all on their own, most of the industry is hoping for 'IMS', but it's too slow to develop and now 'VoLGA' is pushing to be the standard. In short, there doesn't seem to be any consensus and there will probably be different standards for voice on LTE. It's a shame. 1x CDMA will still be the choice-for-voice for the next 3 years easily. All 4g systems are gearing for dongles, laptops and internet devices. Phones are still years away.
  • I disagree. I think the competing standards are why we have low prices in the US. Your real money is spent not on handsets which age like fish and on which prices drop quickly anyway, but your money is really spent on plans. If you compare voice and data in the US obtainable for $50 to $60 unlimited, to unlimited voice and data in single standard countries like France or Germany you would be in for a shock. Phone prices in Europe are not cheap either. Also have you ever used your US based phone roaming in Europe for data? The costs are murderous. Our multiple standard system makes us much more innovative,than the forced system monopolies in Europe
  • I agree with you that our money is spent more on plans. But I disagree that plans will be more expensive. If we have a standard voice and data technology, we could bring our phones to any carrier we wish. This in turn will cause carriers to have price wars on plans, not handsets, to keep their customers loyal. This is exactly what is happening in Asia. Carriers can still offer subsidized phones under a contract as an option. I have never been to Europe, but I go to Asia all the time. And since I have a GSM enabled phone, I can just stick a local sim card, avoiding high roaming charges. I imagine it would be the same in Europe. If however you have a VZW CDMA phone, you will indeed be stuck paying a huge roaming charge because you have no choice, unless you have a world phone. Because VZW decided they want to be different from the rest of the world.
  • Talk about cheap rates in US :-( Unlimited data traffic for 3G is $10 + tax in Sweden. If you want, you can get 4G instead at a higher cost :-)
  • You couldn't be further from the truth. In the U.S. You cannot in practice take one phone and move it to another operator and continue work with it. In Europe/Asia you can. Prices in Europe and Asia are considerably lower on average. If you compare prices, remember that in the U.S. your prices have to be doubled as you pay for sending AND receiving (not so everywhere else). Available phone models are more in Europe/Asia as there's only one standard to build phones to. Many locations don't allow bundled pricing so pricing is more transparent -> lower prices. You see, the underlying technology being standardised allows vendors and telcos to compete on service, pricing, usability and coverage. In the US because there are so many competing incompatible technologies and frequencies even if the tech is the same, the end result is higher pricing. On innovation, do you think innovation happens in a smoller more fragmented market or a larger market, where the underlying thechnology is compatible globally? Unlimited 3G data on this side of the pond (at 2Mbps) is 10USD/mo.
  • A slight but important note: GSM does not do simulataneous voice and data. On "3G" GSM handsets, it's regular old GSM for voice, and a separate radio doing the data on WCDMA/UMTS. This is different - allow one EVDO radio to do voice and data simultaneously. Sadly, they should have done this years ago. The hype around LTE is nice, but it won't be here for a couple years, despite the press releases. I would just like overall better 3G coverage/performance (both EVDO and HSPDA) across the nation. I think WiMax has a window to grab a foothold, but they really need to roll it out fast and price it agressively to stave off the LTE FUD machine.
  • You would be wrong there. Even GSM (GMSK) allows for simultaneous voice and data if the terminal is capable of full duplex operation. W-CDMA based 3G has had simultaneous voice and data from day 1. I know this since I've been training hands-on trainings on the tech since '99
  • hello Malatesta, i found this case on our CDMA2000 1x network. i found a case that our customers made a voice and data session at the same time. i have compared both CDR voice and data and they were valid session
    the problem is, our network is CDMA20001x which not support EVDO service
    i suppose there was late accounting stop response from BTS to reach PDSN so then session has been terminate and resource available for calling session could you please explain to me why this is happening? thanks and regards
  • So much for the new droid from Verizon. They tout multi-tasking but you can not do Voice and Data simultaneously on CDMA. I'm sticking with my iPhone!
  • everyone knows that the iPhone only comes in one flavor: UMTS. Most analysts think a CDMA iPhone isn
  • It does not make sense for Apple to release an LTE iPhone in 2010 as the front running carriers are still testing the technology. Even when the actual deployment begins it will only be for data cards.
  • nice movement for SVDO, should be implemented in Indonesia
    so voice cannot be interrupted during data session. But I think it should be good synchronization between BTS and PDSN in CDMA network