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Discussion Starter #1
It looks like it's time to give up on my rudimentary flip-phone and join the smartphone world. Besides all the usual reasons for needing a smartphone, what finally made my decision is that I need a phone I can actually hear. My hearing isn't great, but the phone certainly doesn't help. I don't have much trouble hearing my wife's smartphone, and she often can't understand speech on mine, even though her hearing is still perfect.

Salespeople in phone stores have told me any smartphone will be an improvement. They say manufacturers don't really want to sell phones that are just phones any more, so they don't put any effort into designing good ones, and if I want decent sound, I need a smartphone. What I'd like to know is whether there is any difference in sound quality between smartphones or they all about the same?
 

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It might vary depending on the operator that you use. eg - whether they are using hd voice speech codecs or not and how they have implemented VoLTE (voice over LTE) in their network. The types of calls you are making, etc.
eg - My vague understanding, in many implementations, both the calling party and the called party need to be on VoLTE for both ends of the call to be using the higher bandwidth speech codecs.

if one party is not on VoLTE, then it's just a regular low bandwidth speech call on both sides and you probably won't notice much of a difference.
Some of the nuances of my vague understanding could change over time as technology advances, so I could be way off base.
Either way, my point is that your experience will vary heavily depending on your choice of operator, and there is no simple one size fits all answer to your question.
 

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I have the A8 as well, and one thing I noticed during a call is a menu option appeared to add extra volume and it actually was a big improvement when your volume is at max and you still cant hear the other end. not sure what other phones have this option but its great, and yes it supports HD audio and has the HD indicator to notify you, which is also nice. HD audio is also very great too.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My wife an I are both on Rogers, so that shouldn't make a difference. My phone is a Doro flip-phone. Hers is a Samsung. I'm not sure of the model, but she's had it at least 2 years. My phone has a volume control, but it doesn't seem to actually control volume. The sound quality varies a lot from one call to the next. Sometimes it's actually adequate. Sometimes it's inaudible. Sometimes it's loud enough, but so distorted it's unintelligible. That would seem to agree with the theory that it depends on what kind of service the person on the other end has. My wife doesn't have this sort of problem, though.
 
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