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Round Up
September 2000

Next-Generation Switching From The Core To The Edge Of The Cloud

Just what goes on in the heart of a next-generation network anyway? For this immense roundup of next-gen switching products and edge access devices, we decided to keep the focus on the service provider's network and the various elements needed to send a voice call efficiently across an IP network, without losing call quality or intelligence. We separated the products into four main categories: Class 4/5 replacements, softswitches, media edge equipment, and signaling edge equipment. Each of those categories could have been broken up into subcategories as well, since every product offering has a unique feature set that places it in a class by itself. And this roundup could have easily taken up the entire magazine - there are that many players in this emerging space. But even with the limited number of companies included, this roundup should serve as an introduction to the basic elements of the packet network, and provide an overview of the offerings available in each segment.
-- Laura Guevin

The Categories


Class 4/5 Switch Replacements
We thought it would be appropriate to begin this roundup with an emerging group of switches that provide the functionality and features of traditional Class 4 and 5 switches -- in much smaller, compact boxes. This breed of replacement switches typically features interworking between circuit and packet-switched networks, and can handle hundreds of thousands of calls. But these switches aren't just dumb boxes -- they can also handle signaling information, and most have sophisticated call handling architectures. These boxes are meant to reside in the center of the service provider's network, and may be collocated at a central office. Someday, they just may replace the traditional central office.

MultiFlow 5000
Anritsu Company
1155 E. Collins Blvd.
Richardson, TX 75081
800-ANRITSU

This family of switches from Anritsu offer four traffic priority levels to insure proper delivery of IP voice traffic. They feature a LAN/MAN Ethernet backbone extension through OC-48 SONET capability, as well as ATM OC-3 and V.35 WAN interfaces. Other features include IP multicast routing support, and wire-speed switching, load balancing, and filtering.


Integrated Convergence Switch (ICS2000)
Convergent Networks
900 Chelmsford St.
Lowell, MA 01851
978-323-3300

The ICS2000 accommodates up to 36,000 DS-0s per chassis, and can handle up to 500,000 busy-hour call attempts. It can be scaled to 108,000 subscriber ports, and supports MGCP for third-party softswitch control - in addition to built-in softswitch, media, and signaling gateways.


CSX 2100
CopperCom
2860 De La Cruz Blvd.
Santa Clara, CA 95050
408-987-8500

Part of the CopperComplete Architecture, this switch offers tandem and local exchange switching functionality in a single-rack footprint. It operates in tandem with the CopperController softswitch, and provides a feature creation environment for easy deployment of new services.


USX1000
empowerTel Networks, Inc.
475 Sycamore Drive
Milpitas, CA 95035
408-519-7100

The USX1000 offers up to 8,064 voice ports per shelf and 32,256 ports per cabinet. It supports H.323, MGCP, and SIP, and offers a distributed call agent and media gateway controller, as well as a high-density media gateway.


ISIS-700 Integrated OmniService Switch
Oresis Communications, Inc.
14670 NW Greenbrier Pkwy.
Beaverton, OR 97006
503-533-0717

This switch features full-duplex, 20 Gbps switching capacity in each chassis. The system is made up of multiple chassis, with one chassis handling signaling for entire system. It also offers CORBA-based element management and a Java-based GUI.


iQ8000
Quarry Technologies
8 New England Executive Park
Burlington, MA 01803
781-505-8300

The iQ8000 enables IP processing speeds of up to OC-48 (2.5 Gbps), and offers a range of interfaces including ATM, Ethernet up to Gigabit speed, and packet-over-SONET/SDH up to OC-12. A 16-slot chassis enables up to 128 OC-3 connections in one rack containing four chassis.


SanteraOne
Santera Systems, Inc.
2901 Summit Ave., Ste. 100
Plano, TX 75074
800-733-7307

SanteraOne offers more than 56,000 DS-0s per shelf, for processing more than 22,000 simultaneous VoIP calls per shelf. In addition to Class 4 and 5 voice services, the switch offers a built in media gateway and media gateway controller, a signaling gateway, and IP applications functionality.


IP Service Switch 5000
Spring Tide Networks
Three Clock Tower Place, Ste. 200
Maynard, MA 01754
978-298-2000

This switch offers service layer intelligence, acting as a single service delivery point in the carrier network. It uses Spring Tide's Pipelined PacketFlow architecture to offer authentication and authorization, encryption and compression, class of service and QoS, detailed accounting, and more.


Fusion 5000
Tachion Networks
185 Rte. 36
West Long Branch, NJ 07764
877-542-7750

Tachion compares their Fusion 5000 switch to a collapsed central office, and the box offers everything from Class 5 to ATM and frame relay switching, along with voice/data gateway capabilities, and IP edge routing. The switching and processing module provides onboard service interworking through a unique chip technology and an 18-layer design.


Taqua Open Compact Exchange (OCX)
Taqua Systems, Inc.
75 Attucks Lane
Hyannis, MA 02601
877-778-8800

The OCX offers Class 4 and 5 switch capabilities in one small box through Taqua's line trunk and trunk interface cards, which fit into any of the box's 20 slots. The switch supports 8,192 ports, and can handle analog lines and digital trunks, as well as CLASS and Centrex services.


Plexus 9000
Telica
734 Forest St., Bldg. G, Ste. 100
Marlboro, MA 01752
508-480-0909

Telica's fault tolerant broadband switch offers a mid-plane design with 21 module slots. The switch features two system processor/timing modules, as well as two switch fabric modules and full redundancy with a 15 Gbps ATM switching fabric which can handle TDM and packet traffic. Other features include more than 60,000 DS-0s per shelf and media and signaling processing capabilities.


ETX5000
Tellabs Operations, Inc. (formerly Salix Technologies)
4951 Indiana Ave.
Lisle, IL 60532-1698
630-378-8800

This class-independent switch offer TDM connectivity over DS-3, E3, and STS-1 electrical interfaces, as well as OC-3 and OC-12c SONET interfaces which can also provide ATM. It also supports 100Base-T Ethernet interfaces, and offers voice processing including compression, comfort noise generation, silence suppression, and echo cancellation.


TB200
Tollbridge Technologies
3121 Jay St.
Santa Clara, CA 95054-3308
408-585-2100

This local exchange gateway connects to an existing Class 5 switch through GR-303 over DS-1 lines, and connects to broadband data networks using ATM over DS-3 lines. The switch appears as a digital loop carrier to the Class 5 switch, transparently delivering all services. The voice module offers voice compression and echo cancellation.

[ Return To The Category List ]


Softswitches
An important part of the emerging distributed telephony architecture, a softswitch handles the signaling and call intelligence functions of a VoIP communication, working in tandem with a media gateway or media gateway controller, which provides the actual transmission. Highly scalable and easily interoperable with a variety of hardware platforms, most softswitches can handle SIP, H.323, MGCP, SS7, and IPDC-based signaling. Softswitches offer a good solution for next-gen service providers who may not want to invest in a Class 4/5 switch replacement, or who are looking for a solution that will work with existing gateways and routing equipment.


LiteSwitch Intelligent Services
Convergent Networks (formerly TCS)
900 Chelmsford St.
Lowell, MA 01851
978-323-3300

This switch offers an open, scalable architecture for unifying devices, protocols, media services, and applications into one software environment. It offers multi-vendor gateway support, PSTN and IP integration, multi-protocol voice and data interaction, and call control functionality.


Continuant Softswitch
GNP - Continuant
555 E. Huntington Dr.
Monrovia, CA 91016
626-305-8484

This carrier-class switch features GNP's natural clustering technology to offer real-time operation, scalability, and the five-nines of reliability. It offers support for up to three million subscribers, and features a media unit controller for handling Megaco/H.248 and Q.931 signaling, and an H.323v2 gatekeeper.


DataAXS
IPAXS Corporation
6301 Benjamin Rd., Ste. 101
Tampa, FL 33634
813-887-1100

This softswitch was designed to integrate packet and PSTN networks while leveraging billing, rate plans, network registration/authentication, CDR logs, and routing tables. It is platform independent, and includes a billing mechanism for prepaid, postpaid, and calling card accounts. The switch supports SS7, ISDN/CAS, H.323, SIP, MGCP, and various other packet telephony protocols.


ControlSwitch
ipVerse, Inc.
490 De Guigne Dr.
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
408-830-3200

This family of software-based switches offloads voice and data from traditional switches, allowing service providers to add applications and value to their offerings. The softswitch delivers PRI connections in tandem with a trunking or access gateway, and offers an open architecture, XML scripts, and Web-based tools for easy deployment of new services.


NuvoStream IVAS
Mockingbird Networks
10050 Bubb Rd.
Cupertino, CA 95014-4132
408-342-1067

The NuvoStream Integrated VoIP Application Switch (IVAS) is an application switch that offers built-in softswitch capabilities that provide signaling algorithms, a UNIX-based protocol engine, and standards-compliant operation and network management. The switch offers a platform for building new enhanced applications through carrier-grade hardware and OSS software.


ORCA SSC Softswitch
Nuera Communications, Inc.
10445 Pacific Center Court
San Diego, CA 92121-1761
858-625-2400

Based on Nuera's ORCA (Open, Reliable Communications Architecture), the SSC offers software-based call processing and signaling with support for SS7 as well as the MGCP and SIP protocols. One softswitch can provide call control for dozens of gateways, with support for legacy and IP networks.


Comprehensive Call Agent Suite
Open Telecommunications
Level 2, 73 Miller St.
North Sydney NSW 2060 Australia
61-2-8925-3000

This complete product suite is made up of the openLocalCallAgent, the openMobileCallAgent, and the openTransitCallAgent. The local call agent manages voice over packet connections to end customers, while the mobile agent offers the IS95/IS2000 Mobile Switching Centre for mobile 2G and 3G networks.


PSX6000 SoftSwitch
Sonus Networks, Inc.
5 Carlisle Rd.
Westford, MA 01886
978-692-8999

Sonus combines its softswitch with the GPX9000 Open Services Switch, offering Class 4 and 5 switching functionality in a single packet solution. The solution supports IADs and edge access devices, as well as IP and wireless phones. The softswitch handles call routing and signaling, and can interface with CPE devices, feature servers, and third-party application servers.


IntelligentIP Softswitch
telecom technologies
1701 N. Collins Blvd., Ste. 3000
Richardson, TX 75080
972-301-4900

This softswitch is based on the company's third-generation call control engine and features a modular design that allows services to easily be added. The switch also enables protocols to be added or modified, and each component is designed for extensibility and robust performance. The switch offers a control engine, a signaling agent, a media gateway control agent, an intelligence layer, a network manager, and a billing event manager.

[ Return To The Category List ]


Media Edge Equipment
In any distributed next-gen network architecture, the devices that control the actual media flow of communications play a vital role. These devices consist of media gateways and media gateway controllers, access concentrators, and other traffic aggregators that sit at the edge of the service provider's network. Once the signaling portion of a call (containing the call routing intelligence) passes through a softswitch, call server, or signaling edge device, the actual media stream is sent to the media controller and/or gateway, which route the message over the most appropriate IP or circuit-switched path available.

Total Control 2000
3Com Corporation
5400 Bayfront Plaza
P.O. Box 58145
Santa Clara, CA 95052-8145
408-326-5000

This media switch from 3Com is part of the CommWorks three-tiered architecture for next-gen call control and routing. It features 52,416 DS-0 ports with support for one million busy-hour call attempts. The switch is fault tolerant, and provides no single point of failure, with seamless PSTN integration. It supports the MEGACO protocol, and can scale from a single shelf up to six shelves.


Accelerator AN-3200
Accelerated Networks
301 Science Dr.
Moorpark, CA 93021
805-553-9680

This high-density platform aggregates traffic over ATM, DSL, and T1 lines, offering throughput of more than five Gbps. It can be used for central office collocation or campus and multi-tenant environments, and is available in four- and 20-slot configurations. The platform can scale up to 456 ports per shelf, and 1,824 ports can fit in a seven-foot telco rack.


Avidia System
ADC Telecommunications, Inc. (formerly PairGain Technologies)
14402 Franklin Avenue
Tustin, California 92780-7013
800-370-9670

This integrated access concentrator enables audio, video, and Internet transmissions to be sent over ATM, in a cell and frame switching architecture. Avidia can interface with T1/E1, OC-3/STM-1, ATM, and DS-3/E3 lines, and may be deployed as a DSLAM or LAN extension concentrator. It supports up to 648 ports, and can scale to fit 1,296 SDSL ports in a single bay.


UMC1000
Advanced Fibre Communications, Inc.
One Willow Brook Court
Petaluma, CA 94954
707-794-7700

A single-platform solution, the UMC1000 fits into an existing network and offers POTS to xDSL as well as E3/DS-3 connectivity over copper, fiber, or wireless transport. It features a 6.2 Gbps backplane architecture, and offers any service from any card slot.


Photonic Switching Platform
Agilent Technologies
P.O. Box #10395
Palo Alto, CA 94303
800-452-4844

This platform offers either a 32x32-port photonic switch or a 16x32-port switch, and includes switch-control electronics as well as a simple API. It features a flexible architecture for easily building optical cross connects (OXCs), optical add/drop multiplexers, and optical protection switching modules.


ASR2000 Aggregation Service Router
Amber Networks, Inc.
2465 Augustine Dr.
Santa Clara, CA 95054
408-988-5100

Designed for the optical Internet this router features service transformer technology which enables IP, non-IP, and IP/MPLS services to be carried over a unified IP/MPLS-enabled infrastructure. The four-slot platform fits into a 19- or 23-inch telco rack, and features the Amber Networks Genie processor, for throughput of up to 6.5 million packets per second.


OSAP 4800
Appian Communications
80 Central St.
Boxborough, MA 01719
978-929-9098

Appian's Optical Services Activation Platform acts as a carrier-class distributed packet switch, and can help migrate customers from a TDM infrastructure to the SONET/DWDM network core. It connects to a SONET/SDH network element via DS-3, OC-3, OC-12, or OC-48 interfaces, and may be placed anywhere in the existing network as a plug-and-play device.


A-4000
Advanced Switching Communications, Inc. (ASC)
8330 Boone Blvd., 5th Floor
Vienna, VA 22182
703-448-5540

The A-4000 media switch from ASC can aggregate traffic from up to 336 T1/E1 connections, and from up to 56 T3/E3 connections. It can also handle as many as 16 T2/E2 connections, and up to four OC-3c ATM connections. The switch can handle service delivery over ATM, TDM, and frame relay lines.


RA-2000 Series
Avail Networks
305 E. Eisenhower Pkwy.
Ann Arbor, MI 48108
734-995-1114

The high-density RA-2000 series of dial access concentrators supports one to two T1/E1 interfaces, and 24 to 60 V.90 modem ports in a compact chassis. It features a RISC multi-processor design and includes 32 MB of onboard memory as well as a SIMM slot. It can be deployed with Avail's Connection Services Manager, which handles Layer 4 policy controls and usage accounting.


Metropolis 4000 Series
Chromatis Networks
450 Spring Park Place, Ste. 500
Herndon, VA 20170-5243
703-481-3100

This high-density traffic solution features a 32 wavelength DWDM system capacity, a 70 Gbps core ATM switch capacity, and is fully redundant. The switch supports ring, multi-ring, mesh, and point-to-point topologies, and may be used as an integrated ADM/cross-connect. Chromatis' Selective WDM technology allows service providers to add DWDM to every node that needs capacity up to 32 wavelengths per fiber.


Multiwave CoreDirector
CIENA Corporation
1201 Winterson Rd.
Linthicum, MD 21090
410-865-8500

An intelligent optical core switch, the Multiwave CoreDirector offers network-wide optical provisioning and management with up to 640 Gbps of full-duplex switching in one bay. It can support 256 OC-48/STM-16 or 64 OC-192/STM-64 interfaces, and can scale down to OC-3. Any optical interface can be configured as concatenated for wavelength switching, or channelized.


Media Gateway 6200
Cirilium Corporation
1615 South 52nd St.
Tempe, AZ 85281
480-829-8888

A 16-slot carrier class media concentrator, the 6200 supports up to 16 port processors and has two hot-swappable 90-230 VAC or 48 VDC auto-sensing power supplies. It can integrate multiple traffic types like IP, T1/E1, and ISDN over a single WAN interface, on a centrally managed platform. Other features include eight T1/E1 interfaces for compressed voice.


MGX 8260
Cisco Systems
170 West Tasman Dr.
San Jose, CA 95134
408-526-7208

This media gateway offers VoIP trunking, local TDM switching, and SS7-PRI offload for convergence of packet and TDM networks. It gives service providers an SS7-PRI gateway solution which redirects data traffic to efficient packet networks. It supports up to 170,000 DS-0s per rack with high availability.


IPSX 9000
CoSine Communications
1200 Bridge Pkwy.
Redwood City, CA 94065
877-4COSINE

This 26-slot IP service processing switch offers scalable ASIC-based processors and an open multi-purpose operating system for easy deployment of new features and applications. The switch may be configured with three types of service blades for virtual routing capabilities with distinct routing tables, forwarding capabilities, and packet classification.


Dynarc56
Dynarc, Inc.
490 Potrero Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
408-737-8000

This multiservice access router dynamically scales to meet user requirements, and lets service providers offer IP-based services over a single platform. The router is based on Dynarc's synchronous transfer mode architecture, for QoS and detailed service level agreements. The router is managed through Dynarc's Java-based Dview tool, or through an SNMP-based application.


IP Telephony (IPT) Solution
Ericsson, Inc.
Datacom Networks
77 South Bedford St.
Burlington, MA 01803
877-832-4222

This platform offers least-cost and dynamic call routing, support for multiple IP networks, and echo cancellation, silence encoding, and error concealment. The solution also features real-time billing, central call data record collection, and itemized accounting, as well as an IVR and SNMP management. It may interface with T1/E1 connections, and supports the Phone Doubler and Phone Doubler Quick Call desktop applications.


BigIron Switching Routers
Foundry Networks, Inc.
2100 Gold St.
San Jose, CA 95164-9100
888-TURBOLAN

A modular, chassis-based router, the BigIron offers up to 64 Gigabit Ethernet ports for campus, LAN/WAN, and MAN environments. It features hardware-based switching, packet-over-SONET capability, and multi-protocol routing. The router includes four QoS levels, policy-based VLANs, inter-switch trunk groups, IP multicast support, and VRRP redundancy.


Tempest DVG
Franklin Telecom
733 Lakefield Rd.
Westlake Village, CA 91361
800-372-6556

With scalability from four to 96 ports, the Tempest may be used to switch voice, fax, or data of up to 24 voice channels over both T1 and analog lines. Packaged in a rackmount chassis with a DSP board for G.729b and G.165 voice compression, the Tempest also features fax relay and detection, as well as T.38 compliance.


G6 VoBroadband Gateway
General Bandwidth
12303 Technology Blvd.
Austin, TX 78727
512-681-5400

The G6 gateway can support up to 4,032 simultaneous calls, and is based on a 36 Gbps cell/packet/TDM backplane for industrial-strength ATM, IP, and TDM switching. It is built to handle carrier-class traffic, and a single 42 U rack can support three G6 chassis. The gateway also features Synthesis12 technology to allow resource sharing and unified management of multiple chassis.


NexEra Packet Voice and Data Gateway
General Datacomm, Inc.
Park Road, Ext.
P.O. Box 1299
Middlebury, CT 06762-1299
203-574-1118

Designed for the carrier-class market, this gateway offers toll-quality compressed voice and packetized data, as well as Multi-Tier Shaping for high bandwidth efficiency. The gateway features priority transport of pay-per-use services, and rapid deployment of revenue-generating offerings.


M Series Internet Backbone Routers
Juniper Networks
1194 North Mathilda Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94089
888-JUNIPER

This series of Internet backbone routers offers infrastructure solutions for backbone bandwidth management, high-speed access, content and Web hosting, and public and private peering. They feature the JUNOS software and the Internet Processor II ASIC for wire-rate performance. The routers may interface with a variety of fiber-optic and electrical transmission interfaces.


The Unifier SMX
Mayan Networks
435 Indio Way
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
408-245-5600

A metro access and transport platform, the Unifier SMX aggregates, grooms, routes and switches IP, ATM, frame relay, and TDM traffic from DS-0 and OC-48 connections. It uses SONET/SDH ring and point-to-point infrastructures, allowing carriers to utilize IP over DWDM and other next-gen metro technologies.


CVX 1800
Nortel Networks
8200 Dixie Rd., Ste. 100
Brampton, ON L6T 5P6 Canada
905-863-0000

An 18-slot access switch with 1,344 modem/ISDN ports, the CVX 1800 aggregates high-volume dialup traffic through the public network and the Internet. It features a multi-service architecture for support of modem, ISDN, voice, PRI, and SS7 communications, and is designed for deployment in a central office or major POP.


Teraplex 20
Pluris, Inc.
10455 Bandley Dr.
Cupertino, CA 95014
408-863-9920

This next-gen IP core router features high availability and long-term capacity growth in a scalable, multi-chassis design. The system may be expanded from 10 Gbps to 19 Tbps of line-rate interfaces, and from 90 Gbps to 184 Tbps of switch fabric capacity. It features the TeraOS software, which offers scaled, distributed versions of routing protocols for utilizing multiple control cards.


Tera Family
Power X Networks, Inc.
2833 Junction Ave., Ste. 110
San Jose, CA 95134
408-456-2500

This family of routers can scale to handle multi-terabit per second connectivity and can support up to 64 ports at OC-768 speeds. It also features embedded RAM, and utilizes the TeraChannel switch fabric architecture from Power X, which has been partitioned to offer a scalable subsystem.


iQ8000
Quarry Technologies
8 New England Executive Park
Burlington, MA 01803
781-505-8300

This service edge switch can support tens of thousands of customers and millions of end users with Quarry's comprehensive service management suit, offering provisioning of basic and enhanced services. The switch enables processing at speeds of up to 2.5 Gbps, enabling service providers to integrate media, application, and network types onto an IP infrastructure.


Smart Edge 800
Redback Networks, Inc.
1195 Borregas Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94089
408-571-5200

A multi-service optical networking platform, the Smart Edge 800 offers rack density and multi-ring manageability for SONET/SDH networks. It offers custom ASICs and software, and features a TDM and packet processing software architecture. The system features the Cross-Connect and Control module which handles TDM and packet traffic, allowing an individual port to carry both simultaneously.


BSR 64000
River Delta Networks
3 Highwood Dr.
Tewksbury, MA 01876
978-858-2300

This carrier-class system offers high reliability and wire-speed forwarding with support for broadcast, unicast, and multicast traffic. Based on open standards like DOCSIS 1.1 and PacketCable 1.0, the system offers carrier-class intra-domain and inter-domain routing, and SmartFlow QoS classification for thousands of traffic flows.


RS 32000
RiverStone Networks
5200 Great America Pkwy.
Santa Clara, CA 95054
408-878-6500

Featuring a high-port density chassis, the RS 32000 lets service providers aggregate all IP access technologies including Ethernet, fast Ethernet, WDM, ATM, POS, and channelized T3. Traffic engineering is offered through MPLS and policy-based routing, which allows service providers to provision traffic at any layer of the network.


Sedona Concourse 8000
Sedona Networks
6604 Towering Oak Path
Columbia, Maryland 21044
410-531-6546

The 8000 multi-services switch integrates network elements, traffic management, and routing functionality on a single platform. It offers protocol conversion, routing for IP, ATM, frame relay and voice networks, and network mediation. Other features include per-subscriber routing for any type of service, unified traffic management, and OSS interfaces.


Tundo Gateways
Tundo
1500 W. Park Dr., Ste. 200
Westborough, MA 01581-3936
508-836-4333

Tundo's family of gateways bridge legacy PBXs and public telephone networks with analog and channelized T1/E1 digital lines or ATM and frame relay networks. The gateways are scalable from support for four analog trunk connections to support for multiple T1/E1 ISDN PRI trunk connections. The large-scale models are available in a PC server chassis or a 19" rackmount configuration.


Edge Routing Switch (ERX)
Unisphere Solutions, Inc.
One Executive Drive
Chelmsford, MA 01824
978-848-0300

This family of switches supports access connections from 56 Kbps to T3/E3, and uplinks of OC-3, OC-12, fast Ethernet, and gigabit Ethernet. It is available as a seven-slot or 14-slot chassis, and all line and I/O modules will fit either chassis, allowing easy scalability. The switch enables service providers to offer private line services, xDSL, cable Internet access, and wholesale support from one edge platform.


1600 QoS IP MAN Switch
VIPswitch, Inc.
8 Commerce Place, Ste. 200
Brossard (Montreal), QC J4W 3H2 Canada
450-923-4040

This switch features support for T3/E3 connections, as well as billing data collection and routing, firewalling, trunking, and NATing. It offers guaranteed QoS for voice and data on the WAN and LAN, and for IP or streaming video. It also features built-in ISDN, T1/E1, and DSL interfaces, and offers MAN functions like SNMP.

[ Return To The Category List ]


Signaling Edge Equipment
Another major segment of the distributed architecture for next-gen switching, signaling gateways and call servers work in tandem with media edge equipment to provide intelligent call routing. Like a softswitch, signaling edge equipment handles call intelligence and delivery information, and passes the media stream along to the media edge device in the network. We've separated out the devices below as they are generally delivered as signaling and call application development solutions, often bundled on hardware platforms.

Alcatel 1000 Call Server
1000 Coit Road, CHB
Plano, TX 75075
972-519-3000

At the center of Alcatel's next-gen network solution, the 1000 Call Server manages all narrowband, data, and multimedia services separated from media-layer gateways. It centralizes call logic and offers simplified service management, and open interfaces for simple communication with gateways, packet switches, and other nodes.


NetCentrex Platform
NetCentrex, Inc.
45 Cabot Ave., Ste. 201
Santa Clara, CA 95051
888-547-9897

This open multi-standard architecture supports H.323, MGCP, and SIP IP calls. It is made up of a call control server, an application server, and an interactive voice response server, and comes with VoIP applications included. Call control features include intelligent network services for VoIP clients and gateways, and a call model based on the Intelligent Network model.


MicroLegend 4000 Series Signaling Gateway
Performance Technologies, Inc.
315 Science Pkwy.
Rochester, NY 14620
716-256-0200

This family of signaling gateways is designed for the reliability and interoperability demands of Internet telephony network operators. Co-designed by Performance and MicroLegend (which Performance acquired), the gateways feature CompactPCI hardware and hot-swappable I/O cards. They offer a distributed SS7 software architecture, as well as on-board conversion for a variety of SS7 standards.


Universal Signaling Point (USP)
Nortel Networks
P.O. Box 13010
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
1-800-4NORTEL

Part of the Succession Series, this signaling gateway features a transparent SS7 network element, for interworking between voice and data networks. It also serves as a proxy on the SS7 side, and bi-directional interfaces protect the circuit network from unknown IP messages. It also features a distributed network model, and supports the IPS7 open architecture, as well as the M2UA, M3UA, SUA, and SCTP protocols for packet switching.


SURPASS hiQ
Siemens Information and Communication Networks
900 Broken Sound Pkwy.
Boca Raton, FL 33487
800-814-1680

This multiprocessor platform offers interworking among legacy intelligent networks, the PSTN, and packet-based networks. It provides gatekeeper and RADIUS functionality, and is scalable to 2,048 processor units. Other features include handling of up to 240,000 parallel voice connections, and support of AIN, H.323, SIP, and media gateway control protocols.


Universal Call Manager (UCM)
Xybridge Technologies Inc.
3400 Waterview Pkwy., Ste. 107
Richardson, TX 75080
214-570-8600

The UCM offer interworking among H.323, MGCP, IPDC, and SIP calls, as well as media control and trigger detection points for service. It features an H.323 gatekeeper, a SIP server, and an MGCP/IPDC call agent, and is part of Xybridge's Universal Service Suite. It is Java-based, and offers several multi-threaded modules for media and resource management, call setup, and routing.

[ Return To The Category List ]
[ Return To The September 2000 Table Of Contents ]







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