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Special Focus
February 2005

A Service Provider’s Survival Guide To A Successful VoIP Migration

This month, the editors of Internet Telephony Magazine are proud to introduce a five-part editorial series entitled, “A Service Provider’s Survival Guide to a Successful VoIP Migration.” Technical, market insight, and editorial commentary will be provided by Volo Communications’ CEO Shawn Lewis, along with several other leading voices in the VoIP industry. This issue’s feature is entitled “Is There Life After UNE-P?” the first installment of the Survival Guide series. Topics that will be addressed in subsequent issues include:

March: What To Look For In A Wholesale VoIP Partner
Industry analysts believe the wholesale market opportunity creates a large business opportunity for new, next-generation wholesale carriers. The market for wholesale broadband voice services in the U.S. is characterized principally by quality, price competition, and least-cost advantage.

But is that enough? How do you know which wholesale partner is the right wholesale partner for you? We will address what you should look for in a wholesale partner, including technology (customizable applications, service creation environment, scalability); automated provisioning (service provider interface, end user controls, real-time CDR); and fulfillment (rapid deployment, end point equipment, and customer support) — all critical to your successful VoIP business.

April: Next Generation Networks: Should You Build Or Buy?
As the wireless industry has shown, disruptive new technology with better product and service features has the effect of luring customers to regularly change carriers. To minimize this risk of churn, carriers must continually expand their service offering in order to retain their existing customers. With the proven acceptance of packet telephony, the incumbent carriers are again faced with a disruptive technology that has a lower cost of service, and heavy CAPEX requirements.

Legacy incumbent service providers have huge capital investments in equipment geared toward transporting traditional circuit switched voice calls. They are quickly finding their technology is outdated. The technology they invested in does not address the convergence of voice and data technologies without significant CAPEX expansion. The market; however, is demanding that they offer new IP-based services, forcing them to invest in and build entirely new networks or to purchase the services wholesale. By purchasing services wholesale, the capital investment is eliminated, and the service provider can spend its time, energy and financial resources on acquiring customers and adding profitable revenue, rather than building its own next-generation network.

The article will explore the many benefits of buying network services from wholesale providers versus building your own network and address the following:

  • CAPEX considerations.
  • Avoid investing in rapidly outdated technology.
  • Invest in marketing to acquire customers.
  • Building a revenue base before building a network.

May: VoIP Applications: To Host Or Not To Host? — That Is The Question
The overall market for VoIP services is rapidly increasing. VoIP has been described as the next “killer application” for telecommunications services. Consumers are demanding more services, more features, and more choices, at a lower cost. The true killer application is not VoIP, but how service providers will bundle and host these advanced services. IP Centrex features are in high demand by end users, and service providers have to either host the services at their facilities or at the customer’s premises.

Hosted IP Centrex services enable service providers to immediately provide PBX functionality for phone service in SOHO and small/medium enterprise business environments. Phone service is provided over IP from the customer to the Internet, a provider’s private IP network, or VPN. All standard features of PBX functionality, as well as more advanced calling features, are provided to the customer.

Hosted IP Centrex provides an immediate cost savings to both the provider and the customer, reducing CAPEX costs, sustained OPEX costs and additional telecommunications and other service charges immediately. In many cases, Hosted IP Centrex also adds flexibility and feature sets not found in many smaller Key or PBX systems. This column will address:

  • OPEX considerations.
  • Speed to market.
  • High-demand features.
  • Rapidly refresh product offering.

June: VoIP Product Packaging — It’s Not Just About Price
Industry analysts project that VoIP traffic will grow to over 1 trillion minutes in 2005. There are several reasons behind the dramatic growth of VoIP, including the proliferation of broadband Internet connections in the residential and small business markets, and the promise of rich features at a lower cost.

However, existing VoIP customers are already discovering that price is not the only factor to consider when selecting a VoIP carrier. The type of advanced services available and the quality of telephone service are quickly coming into play.

Service Providers who offer the richest features with some form of guaranteed Quality of Service are gaining attention. For instance, estimates show the U.S. hosted VoIP marketplace will grow to $4.5 Billion in 2006. In June, we will address:

  • Expanding product capabilities by bypassing central office limitations.
  • Avoiding pricing wars through high-demand features.
  • Creative new bundles for small business with PBX and UM features.
  • Residential bundles; Competing with the incumbents.
  • Retention from win-backs.

Is There Life After UNE-P? -->

[ Return To The February 2005 Table Of Contents ]

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