Frequently asked questions

Here’s a bit of information to help you understand the ins and outs of 4G HD Calling, and what it means for you. See the FAQ below.

4G HD Calling from Spark is nationwide, with coverage that reaches around 97% of Kiwis.

Check out where you can get 4G HD Calling: See the Spark coverage map

Note: 4G HD Calling is available wherever our 4G service is available. Our coverage maps are updated on a monthly basis around mid-month. They may not reflect the coverage we have available today due to the timing of updates and the nature of coverage being predicted. If you can see reception bars and the words 'Spark NZ' displayed at the top of your mobile whilst you are located in the area you’re expecting coverage, you may be eligible for 4G HD Calling (aka VoLTE). Refer to the When can I get 4G HD Calling on my device? FAQ below.

4G HD Calling is available for iPhone 6s and later with iOS 13. If you're an existing Spark Pay Monthly or Prepaid customer, you can get 4G HD Calling on your iPhone*. Here's how:

  1. Back up your phone, then install the software update. (We recommend downloading the software update over WiFi so you don't use data.)
  2. In your phone settings, switch on 4G HD Calling. The settings depend on whether you've installed an eSIM profile on your phone. Learn more about eSIM
    • No active eSIM: Go to Settings > Mobile > Mobile Data Options > Voice & Data. Choose 4G, VoLTE On.
    • Active eSIM: Go to Settings > Mobile > Select SIM > Voice & Data. Choose 4G, VoLTE On.
  3. After 15 minutes, restart your device to activate 4G HD Calling. If you don't restart your device, 4G HD Calling will activate within four hours. You won't lose service during this process.

*New Prepaid numbers need to be active before you can request 4G HD Calling. To activate go to spark.co.nz/go or call *333 from your mobile.. Then you can activate 4G HD Calling. Users of Broadsoft, including IP Centrex and Mobile Office, aren't eligible for 4G HD Calling.

 

Phased migration of eligible customers onto 4G HD Calling started late October 2019 and will continue through 2020. 

If you're one of these customers, and you’ve noticed a new "VoLTE" symbol in your devices status bar, you should now be able to use 4G HD Calling.

You may be eligible for 4G HD Calling if you have one of the following phones:

  • iPhone 6s
  • iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone SE
  • iPhone 7
  • iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 8
  • iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone X
  • iPhone XS
  • iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone XR
  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro 
  • iPhone 11 Pro Max
  • Huawei P30
  • Huawei P30 Pro
  • Huawei nova 5T
  • Nokia 7.1
  • Samsung Galaxy A51*
  • Samsung Galaxy S10e*
  • Samsung Galaxy S10*
  • Samsung Galaxy S10+*
  • Samsung Galaxy Note9*
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10*
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10+*
  • Samsung Galaxy S20*
  • Samsung Galaxy S20+ 5G*
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G*

*Device must be on Android 10 or later

The following phones (Samsung and OPPO) are eligible if they're sourced from Spark:

  • Samsung Galaxy A8
  • Samsung Galaxy A8+
  • Samsung Galaxy A10
  • Samsung Galaxy A30
  • Samsung Galaxy A50
  • Samsung Galaxy A80
  • Samsung Galaxy J3 Pro
  • Samsung Galaxy J4
  • Samsung Galaxy J4+
  • Samsung Galaxy J5 Pro
  • Samsung Galaxy J6+
  • Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro
  • Samsung Galaxy S9
  • Samsung Galaxy S9+
  • Samsung Galaxy Note8
  • Samsung Galaxy Xcover 4s
  • OPPO A9 2020
  • OPPO Reno2

You'll need the latest software installed on your phone. (Data charges apply to software updates installed using data, so we recommend downloading software updates over WiFi.)

If you have an eligible device, get in touch to activate 4G HD Calling or to find out more.

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Eligibility

  • New Prepaid numbers need to be active before you can request 4G HD Calling. To activate go to spark.co.nz/go or call *333 from your mobile.. Then you can activate 4G HD Calling.
  • Broadsoft including IP Centrex and Mobile Office users can't use 4G HD Calling at this time.

If your phone doesn’t support 4G HD Calling, don’t worry. Your device will continue to function as is on Spark’s 3G network. Customers in rural areas that have only 4G coverage won't be able to make calls with an ineligible device, including to emergency services.

If data is switched off your phone, you can still make and receive HD calls. Make sure 4G HD Calling is enabled on your phone so that you can make and receive calls using 4G. As usual, you won’t be able to browse the internet while your data connection is switched off.

Here’s how you can see if you're making a call with 4G HD Calling:

  • Apple: For iPhone 6s and later, you’ll see “4G” in the status bar when using 4G HD Calling.
  • Samsung: You’ll see "HD calling" while placing a call and "HD" in the call screen during the call.
  • Huawei: You'll see "HD" if the call is connected or has gone to voicemail. You won't see any icons while it's ringing.
  • OPPO: You'll see "VoLTE" in the status bar if you've turned on 4G HD Calling.
  • Nokia: You'll see "VoLTE" near the status bar when you pull down the notifications menu. 

If you don't see these icons, the call is most likely using standard 3G (HD Voice).

Yes, you can call anyone using 4G HD Calling, including your friends and family that are on 3G Voice or other networks.

No, 4G HD Calling does not use data.

Yes, you can continue to make three-way conference calls if you’re on a Pay Monthly plan. You can't make three-way calls if you’re on a Prepaid plan.

Yes, if your device is capable of video calling, you'll still be able to make video calls if the person you are calling is also using 4G HD Calling. If you're calling someone who's not using 4G HD Calling, your call will drop to HD Voice (3G) only. If someone who doesn’t have 4G HD Calling tries to video call you, the call won't connect.

For a true 4G-to-4G calling experience, both the caller and the receiver must be using enabled devices connected to the Spark network in a 4G coverage area. 

Yes, activating 4G HD Calling has no additional cost for Spark mobile customers. Voice, text and data usage will still incur charges on your mobile plan as usual.

No, using 4G HD Calling won't affect your wireless broadband. All existing wireless broadband connections already use Spark's 4G network for voice. So you don't need to get a different modem, and you won’t experience slow-downs or data dropouts when making or receiving calls using VoLTE.

We believe our 4G network has been built to provide superior connectivity, speeds and capability compared to older technologies. So we don’t believe there's sufficient need for 3G fallback. Our 4G network, while allowing for small variances, should equal our 3G coverage. As more Rural Connectivity Group (RCG) and RBI2 sites come online, our 4G coverage will continue to expand. 4G HD Calling is an important part of our journey towards 5G.

 

Troubleshooting

 

If you're unable to make or receive a 4G HD call, it might be one of the following reasons:

  • 4G HD Calling isn’t activated for your mobile number. You'll know if 4G HD Calling is active if you see the "VoLTE" icon in your status bar. For iPhones the "4G" symbol will remain on your screen when you're in a call. If you don’t see either icon, try restarting your phone.
  • Your device isn't using the latest software. To check if there's an available update, follow these instructions. Before installing the update, back up your phone. Download the update over WiFi to avoid using data.)
    • iPhone 6s and later: Settings > General > About Device > Software Update
    • Compatible Samsung phones: Settings > Software Update > Download and install
    • Compatible Huawei phones: Settings > System > Software Update > Check for Updates
    • Compatible Nokia phones: Settings > System > Advanced > System Update

Still not working? Chat to us

If you move from an area with 4G coverage to one with only 3G coverage or no coverage, your call might drop. This is because 3G fallback isn't supported. We’re continually expanding the coverage and capacity of our 4G network, so we expect the number of dropped calls to decrease as our service improves.

Customers in some rural locations may notice they have coverage with Spark where they didn’t previously. This may be due to a recent RBI2 site being switched on. To be able to make a call through the 4G HD Calling network, you must have an eligible device and have the service turned on by Spark. If you have an iPhone, you can switch this on yourself. See the above FAQs to check your eligibility and find out how to request 4G HD Calling. If 4G HD calling isn’t active on your line you won’t be able to make calls – including to emergency services.