Editor's Note: This is the tenth in a series of short articles from
Rich Tehrani based on recent visits with a number of VoIP vendors. The
previous article is available here.
I had an interesting meeting with Tekelec (CEO
recently that differs from many of the other meetings I have with industry
vendors. Virtually every other vendor sells only VoIP products, so they
push IP telephony exclusively. Tekelec tells me, on the other hand, that
some of their customers may not be ready for VoIP quite yet. Other reasons
to need a new switch besides immediate VoIP migration would be replacement
due to CALEA compliance or equipment obsolescence.
The point being that you can also consider
implementing a next-gen switch and then moving over to VoIP later. This
assumes, of course, that your switch is VoIP capable. I always thought of
a next-gen switch as a VoIP switch. My natural question, of course, was,
�What do you consider a next-gen switch?� The Tekelec answer is a
switch that separates line interface from call control as well as an open
interface with application servers and open protocols -- one that is
generally open. OK, good enough for me.
Once you have a next-gen switch, you can go right to
VoDSL if you choose. The question now is how do you qualify your data
network for voice? Tekelec has graciously offered to help you in this
endeavor by enrolling you in their certification program where they will
test, among other things, latency, round-trip packet times and packet loss
Having helped carriers with these rollouts, they have
noticed that providers can sometimes get carried away by deploying too
much technology at once. In other words, switching to VoIP and high levels
of compression off the bat may cause quality problems that are difficult
to pinpoint. A better approach is to make sure you are up and running with
IP telephony and then stagger compression.
Other benefits of their experience? Most service
providers are requesting Tekelec technicians to come in and help out. The
softswitch on a CD concept isn�t cutting it in today�s service
A hot area of growth they are involved in is wireless
VoIP, where they recently announced the WX-8000, a VoIP-enabling wireless
media gateway. International carriers, in fact, are looking for combined
class 4/5 switch and wireless solution as it is becoming common for these
providers to receive multiple licenses simultaneously. Tekelec has always
been a strong engineering company on the leading edge focusing on larger
service providers. Their recent
acquisition of Taqua (who just signed
their 100th customer) rounds out their portfolio, allowing
them to help service providers of various sizes. If you are a service
provider of any size looking to add VoIP to your mix, give Tekelec a call.
Please talk back to
me in our forums
Rich Tehrani is TMC's president. He welcomes your comments.
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