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Convergin Enables First Cellular / WiFi Handoff Without Service Level Changes
Convergin, (news - alerts) a provider of fixed/mobile convergence and service interaction solutions, announced the first core network support to enable standards-based Cellular/WiFi handoffs without requiring an operator to make changes in the service level. Unlike other approaches, Convergin's core Wireless Convergence Server (WCS) now enables operators to commercially deploy Cellular/WiFi handoff for dual mode devices without compromising the level of service or requiring comprehensive changes on their service delivery platforms and Intelligent Network (IN) Service Control Points (SCPs). Convergin's Wireless Convergence Server is the first FMC Service Capability Interaction Management (SCIM) solution that allows real network Voice Call Continuity (VCC) deployments that orchestrate the execution of existing and next generation services over hybrid Cellular and WiFi networks without service interruption. Acting as the SCIM, the Wireless Convergence Server orchestrates the network service platforms such that service continuity is preserved across the legacy cellular and SIP/IMS domains even when VCC is deployed. This SCIM-based control is a vital step towards deploying Cellular /WiFi standards-based handoff solutions. Until now IMS-based solutions suffered from being intrusive for the service layer. However, now, with a core solution for convergence, Convergin shows a strong service interaction level solution that allows the operators the merits of IMS with the service transparency of access solutions such as UMA.

UTStarcom to Launch End-to-End FMC Solution
UTStarcom, Inc., (news - alerts) a global leader in IP-based, end-to-end networking solutions and services, announced its end-to-end Continuity solution for the fixed-mobile convergence (FMC) market. The Continuity FMC solution is designed to increase network efficiency and coverage. It can also enable end users to access a rich set of services and features that, in the past, were available through either wireline or wireless networks. The Continuity FMC solution allows users to communicate with anyone from virtually anywhere while using a communication device of their choice. This allows for a simple, cost-effective solution for both wireline and wireless carriers and generally eliminates the need for a major overhaul of existing infrastructure. The Continuity solution includes an FMC Feature Server (FMC-FS) based on the company's mSwitch IP softswitch platform and a dual-mode WiFi/GSM handset. With Continuity, fixed and mobile service providers can deliver a unified service over both wireline and wireless networks. End users can interconnect to the fixed-line or cellular network transparently and roam across them seamlessly regardless of their location, communication device, or network access method. "UTStarcom's Continuity solution has the flexibility and power to enable all types of carriers to enhance their services," said Brian Caskey, vice president of worldwide marketing at UTStarcom. "We believe FMC is the first step for streaming media, and ultimately, we expect the Continuity solution can even support IPTV over the mobile device."

TECORE IMS Strategy: Unmatched Features Bring Convergence to the Edge
TECORE (news - alerts) Wireless Systems unveiled its IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) strategy with the introduction of its product line of IMS network elements. The TECORE IMS leverages the company's patented multi-technology platform allowing convergent operation across the full spectrum of wireless technologies including cellular and wireless LAN. The combined functionality strategically positions the TECORE IMS for ubiquitous access at the edge of the network and centralized control of services. The TECORE IMS, based on TECORE's SoftMSC platform, employs a Java client-server architecture, allowing consistent management across the various nodes of the network, while utilizing carrier grade, high availability Linux processing nodes. The TECORE IMS also provides the backbone for voice communications and interoperability between the different wireless technologies including GSM, CDMA, 3G, WiMAX, and WiFi giving wireless operators the ability to migrate to fully converged networks for voice, data, and multimedia applications. TECORE provides an end-to-end IMS network solution powered by Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) technology and built to 3rd Generation Partnership Program (3GPP) standards. The product line supports scalability ranging from a highly available, distributed deployment controlled from a centralized site down to enterprise IMS. The complete network including the access, transport, control, and service are implemented as components of the IMS solution. The system supports both Pre-IMS and IMS network services such as Push-to-Talk over Cellular (PoC) and Prepaid.

Additional IMS Applications for Telcordia's Maestro Portfolio
(news - alerts) Building on its significant global momentum in IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), Telcordia launched Telcordia Ringback Tones and Telcordia Location-Based Services as additional components of the Telcordia Converged Applications Suite. Designed to be integrated into all wireless and wireline networks, the new applications run on the Telcordia Converged Application Server, supporting PSTN as well as IMS-based protocols such as SIP. With customer deployments in all regions of the world, the new Telcordia IMS capabilities will ensure operators can offer subscribers added value through differentiated and personalized services. The Converged Applications Suite is a set of applications that enable operators to rapidly launch pre-built services, speeding their time-to-market."The addition of these new applications to our Maestro portfolio underlines Telcordia's commitment to IMS and to helping operators derive value from all their networks through our Converged Applications Suite," said Scott Erickson, President, IMS Service Delivery Solutions. "Telcordia is reducing the complexity of rolling out new revenue-generating services and offering operators rapid time to revenue for high-value services. The first two in a series of expanded applications in the Maestro portfolio will provide operators with an extra level of advanced subscriber offerings to help them gain a competitive advantage." Location-based services enable operators to create and launch new consumer and business offerings using the ability to determine a user's location, with full user privacy and network security.

Lucent and IBM to Deliver Integrated IMS Solutions to Carriers
Lucent Technologies (quote - news - alerts) announced an agreement with IBM to deliver leading next generation solutions that enable service providers to more rapidly introduce new Internet Protocol (IP)-based services while managing expenses. Together, Lucent and IBM will develop, market, and deliver joint solutions based on IMS that will accelerate the introduction of new blended services for wireless and wireline carriers. The two companies are aligning their technology assets to deliver a complete IMS solution to enable rapid deployment and faster time to market for next-generation IMS composite or blended services. This joint architecture can reduce service providers' capital and operating expenses as well as enable them to deliver new revenue producing services. The two companies have developed a reference architecture to support operations and billing solutions that leverage IBM's WebSphere, Rational and Tivoli software, Lucent's VitalSuiteĀ® products, and/or third-party independent software vendors and services from each party. "In this competitive market, carriers are looking to bring next generation services to their customers quickly and at a reduced cost," said Sandy Aitken, Global IMS Solutions Owner, IBM Communications Sector. "Together IBM and Lucent will provide the capabilities and technology necessary to deliver a complete IMS solution for rapid deployment of composite and blended services."

Apertio Proves IMS Interoperability with Leapstone
Apertio (news - alerts) and Leapstone Systems (news - alerts) announced the completion of a comprehensive interoperability test (IOT) between the Apertio One-HSS (Home Subscriber Server) and Leapstone's Communications Convergence Engine (CCE). The successful completion of this HSS / SCIM integration project verifies the maturity of these IMS elements and promises to accelerate the deployment of IMS applications within core communications networks. By proving complete interoperability against defined IMS standards, the partnership offers operators greater performance, choice, and flexibility in their IMS strategies and dramatically reduces integration costs and testing time in real-world deployments. "With IMS a clear focus for both fixed and mobile operators, the creation of a fully interoperable ecosystem of independent technology providers is a significant market enabler," said Wallace Ascham, Co-founder and Partnership Director of Apertio. "Today's IOT announcement between Apertio and Leapstone further extends this chain of exciting new vendors and allows carriers to choose best of breed solutions that address the specific demands of their infrastructure and customer base." "IMS is a vital component of our business strategy and the successful completion of this IOT marks an important milestone in bringing this new technology to operators," said Rick Orriss, President & CEO of Leapstone Systems. "Interoperability is one of the main advantages of deploying a standards-based IMS architecture, and we're pleased to be working closely with Apertio to ensure that our combined solutions meet the rigorous IMS standards."

NMS Communications and LogicaCMG Launch Hosted Ringback Tones
NMS Communications (news - alerts) and LogicaCMG (news - alerts) announced the launch of the hosted ringback tone service for Finnish telecom operator Elisa, a partner operator of the Vodafone Group. Elisa's Tunnari ringback tone service is based on NMS's MyCaller personalized mobile entertainment platform and LogicaCMG's global delivery, systems integration, and support capabilities. The combined solution by LogicaCMG and NMS is hosted using LogicaCMG's own data centers, enabling Elisa to reduce the cost and time-to-market for ringback tone services, while gaining the ability to quickly scale the service to meet growing demand. Ringback tones complement other popular mobile applications such as ringtones and wallpapers, which let users personalize their mobile experience. Ringback tone services allow mobile users to replace the usual "ring" that callers normally hear with music and other audio clips chosen by the subscriber. Industry analyst firm Ovum estimates the worldwide market for ringback tones will reach $2.7 billion by 2009. "Mobile subscribers today are looking for services that are not only entertaining but that let them express their personalities," said Mikko Uosukainen, project manager at Elisa.

Brasil Telecom Gets IMS Elements for VoIP From Lucent
Lucent Technologies (quote - news - alerts) announced that it has signed a contract with Brasil Telecom (BrT), (news - alerts) one of the largest broadband service providers in Latin America, to deploy new multimedia elements in the operator's networks in Curitiba, Sao Paulo, and Brasilia regions. The agreement covers equipment and software on Lucent's MiLife services platform, which includes multiple elements in Lucent's IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) solution, that enables new applications over BrT's Internet Protocol (IP) communications network. With this contract, Lucent expands its participation as next generation network and Voice over IP supplier to Brasil Telecom. "Using Lucent VoIP solutions, we are able to offer profitable and differentiated applications, with quality, mobility, security and the cost- effectiveness that our end-users demand," highlights Marcelo Nobre Frasson, Network Planning Director for Brasil Telecom. The transition to a voice over IP network is expected to reduce operating and network maintenance expenses. Additionally, the new network elements will enable BrT to deploy advanced services that can generate additional revenue.

West Corporation Selects Sonus Solution as Component of Next-Gen IVR Network
Sonus Networks, Inc., (news - alerts) a leading supplier of service provider voice over IP (VoIP) infrastructure solutions, and West Corporation, (news - alerts) a premier provider of outsourced communication solutions, announced that West Interactive Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of West Corporation, has selected the Sonus IP Multimedia Subsystems (IMS)-ready architecture as a component of its next generation voice network. West Interactive, which specializes in interactive voice response (IVR) services, is deploying a new VoIP network to cost-effectively increase network capacity and support the development of new revenue-generating services. The Sonus solution will support incoming voice and data traffic for West Interactive's IVR services using the Sonus GSX9000 Open Services Switch, PSX Call Routing Server, and the Sonus Insight Management System. The solution will also enable West Interactive to migrate onto a single IP infrastructure that will allow the company to deliver a host of enhanced services to individual customers and enterprises. "Our clients depend on reliable communications services. As a result, we require a network that offers carrier-class call quality and network reliability," said Craig Webster, senior vice president of systems development, West Interactive Corporation. "We evaluated a number of technology solutions, but Sonus' solutions and their track record for delivering top of the line technology made Sonus the clear choice."

Empirix Inc., (news - alerts) which helps organizations adopt complex communications solutions with confidence, is on the road with its 'Demystifying IMS Roadshow.' Empirix's series of seminars offers service providers, infrastructure vendors, and application developers pragmatic knowledge of IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) deployment and network and service readiness. The emerging IMS network architecture gives fixed and mobile operators a common Session Initiation Protocol (SIP)-based application and switching infrastructure. It will be used to deliver a host of enhanced multimedia and traditional services across any access technology. "The promise of IMS has been well publicized, but practical IMS expertise is hard to come by," said Duane Sword, Vice President of Product Management at Empirix. "Our extensive experience in helping service providers deploy new technologies in the access, control and application layers of their networks means we are well placed to offer impartial advice on IMS roadmap planning, implementation, and successful technology transition. "We are seeing tremendous interest in this topic, and have fielded numerous requests for advice on IMS readiness," added Sword. "Clearly our ability to help customers share best practices for preparing for IMS has struck a chord in the market." The Empirix Demystifying IMS Roadshow covers: the state of IMS adoption; deployment examples; what IMS means to service providers; and proven testing strategies for IMS readiness.

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