SK Telecom deploys HD Voice over LTE, claims title of world's first

The little blue marble we call Earth is no stranger to HD Voice -- it's been around commercially since Orange debuted the service over its 3G network in Moldova nearly three years ago -- but the technology still hasn't been officially deployed over an LTE network. That is, until SK Telecom launches the service later today. Doing so will allow the South Korean carrier to snag the crown for world's first before Sprint, which recently announced that its network won't have it until later this year. It's a win-win scenario for the company: HD Voice over LTE is meant to vastly improve call quality and reduce latency for the customers, while lessening network strain and offering new revenue-making opportunities for SK Telecom. What about devices? It hasn't announced any brand new smartphones that can take advantage of the service, but the company's ready to pre-load the Samsung Galaxy S III with software that enables HD Voice capability, and is planning to push an update to current owners of the flagship device. If you're the type of person that still makes the occasional call, this kind of progress should come as pleasant news.