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VoIP Switch - Five Quick Questions with VoIP Switch Provider Sippy Software

 
May 20, 2011

 


Sippy Software’s Sippy Softswitch is a call-control software package that enables service providers to build scalable and reliable VoIP networks. Based on Session Initiation Protocol (News - Alert) (SIP), it offers call-routing capabilities to maximize performance for both small and large packet voice networks.

A complete carrier-grade VoIP switch solution and customer management platform, Sippy Softswitch provides the functionality necessary to quickly launch an internet telephony business, in addition to high-performance switching capabilities.

From subscriber self sign-up, to billing and ongoing customer support, the software supports multi-tier wholesale business models and features built-in IVR server for offering calling card and callback services.

Last week Sippy Software officially released version 2.1 of Sippy Softswitch, with powerful new features and capabilities added. This flexible and scalable VoIP platform, which is also available via the SaaS (News - Alert) model, is not only used by service providers to deliver business and residential VoIP services, it is also a favorite among Web developers seeking to integrate “click to call” functionality into websites.

To learn more about Sippy Software and the new version of its VoIP switch, TMCnet recently interviewed Maksym Sobolyev, CEO. What follows are excerpts from our interview:

TMCnet: What global markets is Sippy Software playing strongest in currently? Is the company looking to increase its presence in the US market or any other markets in particular? What is the current strategy for doing that? How many customers does Sippy Software currently have and does that list include any big names that TMCnet readers would be familiar with?

Maksym Sobolyev: Currently our strongest market is small and medium size ITSPs of all kinds. From wholesale, to Vonage (News - Alert)-like retail, calling card companies, call shops, call centers etc. We currently have around 100 production deployments worldwide. The bulk of our customer base has been with us for three or more years. The busiest systems do 4,000-5,000 concurrent calls at peak with 150-200 mbps of RTP traffic. To see some actual stats from one such production system, click here.

Most of our customers run on top of our integrated softswitch/billing platform, but we also have some customers with custom-built networks to cater specific needs and integrate into existing business/IT infrastructure.

Geographically we have customers all around the globe. Asia and Middle East are probably the fastest growing in terms of VoIP conversion.

TMCnet: What are the major improvements in Sippy Softswitch 2.0 compared to the previous versions? (v1.9, v1.8)

MS: --Improvements in the redundancy and failover system

--More class 5 features: DND; Follow-me; Anonymous calling; Voicemail dial-in access; Supplementary service codes support

--New PBX (News - Alert)/Business features: Conferencing; DID routing enhancements to support more business scenarious; Billing including flexible DID billing (monthly, per-minute or combined)

--New Payments capabilities: Google (News - Alert) Checkout payment processor support; Authorize.Net payment processor support; 3D-secure payments support for Turkish Garanti Bank payment processor

--New Wholesale capabilities: Better overcommit protection for multiple levels of resellers;

--Numerous user interface improvements and new features

--Third-party integration interface (XMLRPC)

--More than 10 new functions to manage Conferencing, Rates, DIDs etc.

--Scalability improvements, including effective use of up to 16-way SMP systems

TMCnet: What are the biggest challenges service provider start-ups face in today's market and how does Sippy Software help them overcome these challenges?

MS: Hardware and software cost is certainly one that we can take out of equation. And this is not about initial cost, but also about ongoing maintenance cost. With our hosted plans one can start business with just $145/mo. Of course you also need a termination, and we would probably introduce some plans with minutes included to address this soon. And our plans can be scaled up and down on demand.

TMCnet: What do you consider to be the top challenges to address by way of soft switch features and functionality -- LNP/MNP functionality? Multi-jurisdictional call rating/billing? Least Cost Routing (aka "intelligent" call routing because it's not just about cost but also quality)? Delivery of CDRs in real time? Integration with Web applications? Others?

MS: Right now our top goal is reliability and resiliency of the core platform. Clustering, load balancing, HA, management and monitoring features are becoming increasingly important when you go from 1-2 nodes to 10-15 nodes and this is the market we are after now. We think that we have pretty good grip on solving those problems, while keeping the TOC under control. The upcoming 3.0 release due in 3Q 2011 will provide 5-10 nodes clustering support with automatic failover and load balancing.

TMCnet: Why does Sippy Software believe that open source and open standards represent the "only future" for the telecoms industry?

MS: Well, the whole point of communication is to pass your message along from point A to point B quickly and without distortion. And each time you need to convert the "language" from one to another so that A can understand B there is always a cost and uncertainty. The cost of bandwidth almost zero now, so the only way to go forward is to eliminate that conversion cost. There is simply no way around that. In the all-connected world you either speak language that everybody understands or fade to non-existence.

Look at the development of IP as a perfect example. It was not the only offering, there were whole bunch of vendor-specific protocols just 10-15 years ago, some of which are more technically advanced and sophisticated. And where are those protocols today?

It is a bit different with the software. I don't think we would ever be in the world with only open source software or only closed source software. It will always be some combination of the two.

TMCnet: Thank you, Maksym, for your time.


Patrick Barnard is Group Managing Editor, TMCnet. In addition to leading the online editorial department, he focuses on call and contact center technologies. He also covers IP communications, networking and a variety of other topics. To read more of Patrick's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Patrick Barnard

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Sippy Software is a leading industry VoIP Switch solution provider and long time partner of TMCnet’s VoIP Switch channel. Since May 2011, the VoIP Switch channel has been providing news and information on all the latest softswitch technologies and trends for network operators and service providers.

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Intro to Basic System Features

Accounts Overview
An account is a logical entity usually representing some logical or physical end point in the VoIP network.

Customers
Customers are logical entities in the system for which invoices will be generated. They may be termination partners, resellers of a service, or a virtual .

Tariffs and Rates
Tariff is logical entity in the system, which represents rules for rating and billing calls made by Account or Customer to which this Tariff has been assigned.

Balance and Credit Limit
In addition to Tariff, each Customer or Account, except Root Customer, has those two basic rating/billing parameters associated with it – Balance and Credit Limit.

Intro to Advanced System Features

On-Net Routing
On-Net Routing is the feature that allows placing calls from one account in the system to another account in the system.

Ability to Charging On-Net (Account-to-Account) Calls
In some cases it might be necessary to charge either caller or callee or both for the on-net call based on per-minute rate.

Automatic Database Backup
The Softswitch includes the system which allows performing automatic backup of the database periodically.

Ability to Get exchange rate using external script
Exchange rates can be set using external custom script.


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