In the Nokia Siemens Networks Smart Labs*, we’re always keen to explore just exactly how handsets and applications are working in the network. And sometimes we find some surprising things.
For example, we recently tested several popular Voice over IP (VoIP) applications on a range of handsets and compared them to the network and battery impact of making just a regular voice call on 3G. We found three main results.
#1 – the Android phone that we’ve tested generated 2-3 times more signaling traffic during VoIP calls than the iPhone or the Nokia N8. Okay, we care about that in the network management world – it might not be so exciting for you if you’re not running a network.
How about this one, then? #2 – Using VoIP generates up to four times more data traffic than a regular voice call does. So check your rate plan – lots of VoIP calls may lower your voice call costs, but they might be pumping up your data costs.
And now here’s the big surprise: #3 – Depending on the kind of handset that you’re using, VoIP calls can use up to twice the battery power that voice calls do (see the graph below). That’s huge! So if you’re a big VoIP user, and you always find your battery running down quickly, there’s a connection.
It’s true, there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and using VoIP does carry some data and battery lifetime costs. But hey, once you know what they are, it’s easier to make the decision about whether to press that voice call button or to fire up Skype.
*To cooperate with device and OS vendors as well as application developers, and study application behavior in a “real” environment, we created Smart Labs in Dallas, Texas, USA; Espoo, Finland; Seoul, South Korea; and, jointly with Telefónica and Nokia, the ‘Smartphone Experience Lab’ in Madrid, Spain.
This post is by Leslie Shannon from Mobile Broadband Marketing.