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MetroPCS launching VoLTE handsets in second half of 2012

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MetroPCS is planning to launch one or two Voice over LTE capable handsets in 2012, despite delays caused by chip manufacturers.

MetroPCS LTE
MetroPCS LTE

Voice over LTE technology isn't expected to rollout nationwide until 2013, but MetroPCS already has plans to launch one or two VoLTE-capable handsets in the second half of this year. Chairman and CEO Roger Linquist made the announcement during the company's fourth-quarter earnings call, where he also explained that the rollout had been planned for earlier in the year, but delays with the Qualcomm 8960 chipset pushed plans back somewhat. Verizon has already reportedly been testing VoLTE — which allows carriers to reduce the load placed on 3G networks and can be put in place even when LTE coverage isn't widespread — in two different markets, and like MetroPCS plans to do a nationwide rollout next year.