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Telephony – Telco service or Internet application?

9 Jun

 

When comparing different forms of VoIP, one risk comparing “apples and oranges”. Broadly speaking, we can divide VoIP into two main categories. First, the service can be implemented as a faithful copy of circuit switched telephony; in a network with full control over performance and quality. Second, VoIP can be implemented as a standalone application used over the open Internet.

Originally published in NetworkWorld Norway.

 

3GPP and IMS

3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project) has played an important role when VoIP has become a recognised substitute for traditional telephony among telecom operators. 3GPP standardises the mobile technologies 2G, 3G and 4G, and they have done so based on the general IP technology standardised by IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force).

At first 3GPP concentrated on developing mobile networks as an evolving telecommunications architecture, following a vertically integrated model for provision of telephony. As the Internet revolution influenced the telecom market, the focus has shifted more towards IP-based services of various kinds.

IP networks and the Internet are not equivalent concepts. As IP technology was introduced in the mobile architecture, this was done in a way that maintained telecommunications networks’ support for QoS (Quality of Service). They had a clear view to continue provision of telecom services, as opposed to Internet applications, but based on a new IP-based network.

The service platform which was standardised as part of the mobile architecture was named IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem). IMS is based on SIP (Session Initiation Protocol), the VoIP protocol from IETF, but extended with a comprehensive architecture for QoS. IMS has an “open” interface for service development, but requires a business agreement with the mobile operator. So this is a completely different kind of openness than the one found on the Internet where “everyone” can develop their own services.

VoLTE and RCS

The basic mobile architecture has undergone a tremendous development by 3GPP. Now we are in a phase where LTE (Long Term Evolution) is being adopted, often referred to as 4G despite the fact that it is not “real” 4G. LTE is the first 3GPP architecture that has eliminated the circuit switched domain, appearing as a pure IP network. Therefore there are great expectations for VoIP in this architecture, a functionality called VoLTE (Voice over LTE).

The transition from traditional telephony to VoIP has been going on for a long time. In mobile networks this has taken longer than expected. IMS has been around as a part of the mobile architecture for many years already. Furthermore, VoLTE includes options that could still delay this transition; LTE phones will initially combine LTE with older mobile technologies, allowing telephones to fall back to these older technologies. There is also a quasi-solution that transports traditional telecom protocols encapsulated in IP packets, so-called VoLGA (Voice over LTE via Generic Access).

The telecom industry also promotes advanced VoIP services that can stimulate the transition from traditional telephony and SMS to IP-based “equivalents” called RCS (Rich Communication Services). RCS provides services such as voice and video telephony, presence, instant messages and more, integrated in a unified user client for mobile phones that will provide seamless user experience of multimedia communication.

RCS is based on the IMS platform using SIP and SIMPLE (SIP for Instant Messaging and Presence Leveraging Extensions). Thus, the basis of this is IETF protocols, but implemented in an architecture that is intended to replicate the telecom network in the shape of an IP-based multimedia network. RCS is promoted by GSMA (GSM Association) and OMA (Open Mobile Alliance). OMA is the descendant of the WAP Forum, if there are still some who remember WAP.

QoS and Policy Control

RCS seems like an impressive technology, and what is the big deal? What distinguishes this from the applications that are already in use on the Internet? A major difference is that RCS can benefit directly from the mobile network built-in mechanisms for QoS. But it is difficult to predict what will give the best user experience, multimedia services integrated in the mobile architecture or free choice among different applications offered over the Internet.

A well-known characteristic of the Internet is that it is “best effort” and can’t guarantee the quality of the communication. In the mobile architecture, QoS is a key feature across the entire design. The underlying IP network will typically be based on DiffServ (Differentiated Services) and MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching), both well-known technologies from IETF supporting traffic management and QoS.

In the LTE architecture, QoS is policed by a function called PCC (Policy and Charging Control). As the name suggests, not unnaturally, management of QoS and charging are two sides of the same coin. PCC controls establishment of user sessions with various performance levels, and charging information is generated based to the capacity used by the different sessions.

Initially, IMS was specified for mobile networks, but in retrospect it has been found very useful extending the scope to include fixed networks, giving a combo solution which is often referred as NGN (Next Generation Networks). This facilitates convergence between fixed and mobile networks (Fixed-Mobile Convergence).

Over-the-top (OTT)

The traditional telcos are operating in a market that is completely changed because of the Internet. This leads to a situation where the business that telecom players envision, is facing strong competition from Internet players. The Internet model is based on decoupling of applications from the network layer, as opposed to the telecom model that relies on the services that are vertically integrated with the network.

Innovative solutions that can be used “over-the-top” without specific facilitation from telecom operators, enables virtually unlimited choices for end users. Internet applications, even real-time applications such as VoIP, work fairly well without the quality architecture of NGN. Congestion control mechanisms regulate traffic load of the Internet, sharing the available capacity between users.

However, users’ choice is not easy. Such innovative solutions in some cases evolve into isolated “islands” that are not compatible with each other. Major players are trying to create their own closed ecosystems consisting of operating systems or app stores for example. On the other hand, some traditional telecom operators introduce OTT solutions to meet the competition, making use of similar means.

The future will show which model is most adaptable. Net neutrality is tasked to ensure that the Internet model can develop freely. Meanwhile, the Norwegian guidelines for net neutrality are balanced, allowing the telecom model to evolve in parallel. This is often referred to as “specialised services”, as opposed to the Internet access service that works as a general electronic communication service.

Source: http://ipfrode.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/telephony-telco-service-or-internet-application/

Cloud is a major opportunity for operators to avoid simply becoming bit-pipes.

23 May

Hrvoje Jerkovic, service quality assurance manager, VIPnet, Croatia, is speaking on Day One of the LTE World Summit, taking place on the 24th-26th June 2013, at the Amsterdam RAI, Netherlands. Ahead of the show we find out more about his views on various topics, including cloud, RCS, and VoLTE.

What major developments have there been with regards to the LTE industry in your region this past year?

VIPnet launched LTE commercially in March 2012 and currently we provide LTE in four major cities, making up almost 50 per cent of the country’s population coverage. The fact that we have widely available dual-carrier 3G on 2100 MHz for several years, offering speeds up to 42MBps, makes LTE a logical next step technology but it’s not a quantum leap.

What are the key techniques for network optimisation in LTE and what effect can it have on the customer experience?

Despite moderate LTE coverage our top customers with state-of-the-art smartphones should benefit from it whenever possible. In terms of network optimisation, in particular VIPnet has recognised the importance of smooth handovers between 3G and 4G networks in idle as well as in dedicated mode. LTE brings an additional challenge on 800MHz because there is no 3G layer, which makes handover from 2G to 4G and vice versa, even more interesting for operators to solve.

Why do you think that cloud services are now so important for telcos?

The cloud is really being hyped right now by operators as it is a good story to cover the real issues. Cloud is all about reducing costs by merging a number of utilities into one cost-efficient environment that delivers a secure and reliable service, and it is something that operators can offer to their customers. A few years ago it was called hosting, but now it has evolved. Cloud is a major opportunity for operators to avoid simply becoming bit-pipes.

Do you believe that RCS services can genuinely help the industry compete with OTT?

OTT players are gaining ground but for the huge majority of customers we are still “service providers”, and adopting RCS services is the next step in the evolution of telcos. Giving customers new ways of communication, in combination with good marketing will lead to a success story. The biggest issue with RCS is that is taking a long time to get to market and is in danger of dying before it starts, but maybe it still has a chance.

Is VoLTE part of your plans and what benefits will it bring both to operators and consumers?

Since we are the premium operator in the Croatian market, our promise to customers is to support all features they might need. As far as VoLTE is concerned we have been providing our customers with an HD Voice service for over two years. However, in conjunction with the development of handsets that support it we will implement VoLTE. We have to be very careful with the customer perception of VoLTE because they must find some significant value in it in order to accept it. It is very unlikely that VoLTE will find its way to the market merely because it is a new technology.

Should operators charge a premium for LTE just because it’s a faster service?

Investment in LTE requires that significant resources so therefore it’s expected that a premium charge should be applied. However, LTE should not only be faster but, according to standards, offer a quality level that guaranteed to be better than 3G.

What do you think will be the most exciting new development in LTE in 2013?

There are several technologies that will shape LTE in near future and one of them is heterogeneous networks. With higher bandwidth we can expect an even higher signalling load on the network, which is challenging to handle and control. The other will be controlling roaming pricing. Since Croatia is a very tourist oriented country, and will very soon become a full member of EU, it is our obligation to fully apply all the regulations regarding roaming pricing.

Source: http://lteconference.wordpress.com/

Braving the Signalling Storm

8 Mar

Fourth generation network technologies are well and truly here, and several operators have already experienced outages in their LTE networks due to signalling ‘storms’ in various parts of the network. The explosion in traffic and bandwith demands is well acknowledged but signalling is another issue operators will have to contend with. LTE networks will have 100 per cent smartphone penetration from day one and smartphones generate significantly more signalling traffic than feature phones or data cards, both on the access network and the core network.

Aside from “chatty apps” on the device, such as Facebook, Skype or WhatsApp, operators can expect the network core to see an uptick in signalling traffic as they seek to introduce richer services such as VoLTE and RCS, which send lots of policy requests in the signalling channel. This will be exacerbated by the move to real-time, dynamic charging and shared usage plans, which will increase the traffic between operators’ policy engines (PCRF) and various other elements in the back office.

Tasked with helping operators address this issue is Mallik Tatipamula, Vice President for Service Provider Solutions at F5 Networks, who joined the firm at the start of 2013. Tatipamula’s resumé reads like a who’s who of Silicon Valley, with Motorola and Cisco among his previous employers. He most recently held the position of head of research at Ericsson Silicon Valley.

Along with working alongside most of the world’s tier one operators over the years, Tatipamula believes his background has given him a good mix of understanding of both the telecom and IT/networking worlds and allowed him to spot the convergence of telecoms and IT early on. “My intention was to learn and expand into these new technologies and help shape next generation networks,” he says. “Right now, service providers are transitioning from connectivity to experience providers, while transforming their services and business models

“But in the past to the present scenario, service providers consolidated their transport infrastructure towards all IP mainly driven by fixed mobile convergence. So, In the process, fixed mobile converge became focused on transport convergence, so every operator I know has consolidated their infrastructure , but they have only looked at the control aspect in part and the services aspect not at all. There is no full convergence here,” he says.

In terms of discussion over the control plane, the industry still has IMS, but this is mostly implemented on the fixed side, although there are ongoing discussions on using voice over IMS for LTE and deployments may even start taking place this year, using VoLTE on IMS.

But largely, the control aspects of services are still to be converged, and between the services and the control layer the industry is seeing internet services like Google and the OTT providers arrive in the middle, offering the same services and applications but on an access agnostic medium. For example, users can get their Gmail on a laptop, desktop, mobile device or tablet, over fixed or mobile access. OTT players are able to provide apps to any device.

“So next I see IT and telecom convergence getting ready for content delivery in the cloud. We’re moving to a future mode of operation where we see control and services consolidated into cloud and a common IP transport also cloudified.

“Cloud is really nothing but a combination of storage, processing, and networking. So the moment you add caching (storage or memory elements) and transcoding (a processing element) on top of the RAN or EPC (Evolved Packet Core), it becomes cloud. “The future now is fully converged application delivery networking, with the convergence at the transport , control and services layers for different types of access mechanics,” Tatipamula says.

According to Tatipamula, convergence today is mainly driven by application delivery, but in the past it was driven by technology. Now the focus is more on business models and service models, which is where application delivery networking comes into the picture. In Tatipamula’s words, the industry is “moving from technology centric and network centric convergence of the past to application delivery centric convergence in the future.” The question many operators are asking now is; how can I deliver applications at lowest TCO while still increasing ARPU? The answer, according to F5, is by improving the quality of experience to end users and enabling new applications, allowing service providers to move into new verticals like automotive.

It’s a business formula F5 refers to as the ‘three Es’: economics; experience; and enablement, all of which need to be optimised, secured and monetised.

“When it comes to experience and enablement, we can do application optimisation, content optimisation, and personalisation through user, application and network awareness, and as a part of our strategy, we will soon be announcing mobile device and application management, so operators can differentiate enterprise apps on different devices,” Tatipamula says.

When it comes to economics, application optimisation is F5’s bread and butter, with traffic optimisation on the data plane carried out using loadbalancers. The second thing the company does is “signalling optimisation” to help manage the exponential growth of smartphone signalling using tools aquired with Traffix Networks. As operators are discovering, it’s important to optimise data plane traffic, signalling traffic and application plane traffic.

As operators move to LTE, legacy signalling protocol SS7 is being replaced by purely IP-based signalling interfaces, such as Diameter. Diameter is an authentication, authorisation and accounting protocol for networks, which also supports mobile management.

Diameter is largely a new protocol for GSM operators, although it will be familiar in part to CDMA operators, which already have some experience of its predecessor, RADIUS. However, all operators need to invest in the right sort of Diameter equipment in network. As a standard, Diameter is relatively stable but can quickly become complicated once an operator moves on from just using it for user authentication to using it to manage roaming users in all possible scenarios.

Diameter is the protocol of choice for doing everything and anything in LTE. This includes connecting data plane components like the PDN gateway to control plane components like PCRF to application plane components such as IMS. Diameter then connects those things to backend infrastructure such as B/OSS and online charging systems. But then, contrary to the other signalling challenges that operators are facing, Diameter is associated with revenue generation since it is often coupled with policies and charging. By default, Diameter has become a much bigger priority for operators compared with legacy signalling, which primarily drove network functionality (call setup) and operators only invested in handling signalling traffic. Mallik Tatipamula, Vice President for Service Provider Solutions at F5 Networks But now operators are deploying Diameter routers to operate a more efficient network, with Diameter edge agents for roaming, Diameter Gateway for interworking of 3G and LTE networks,and load balancing to make sure critical components do not fail. It is clear that Diameter is not a simple protocol to handle and operators are presently grappling with different deployment choices. The message from F5 is that operators need to optimise their control plane and scale with intelligence.

Personalised, media-rich applications and mobile devices are putting an enormous strain on the signalling network, which manages subscriber information, network status, and session management. So service providers need a scalable, reliable control plane to satisfy customers across all signalling interfaces such as Diameter, RADIUS, DNS, and SIP.

Although the focus is currently on Diameter, SIP is also expected to create challenges at the edge of the network when LTE-specific services, including VoLTE and RCS, enter the mass market. VoLTE signalling flow is significantly more complex compared with legacy voice and estimates from Informa Telecoms & Media indicate that VoLTE SIP requires at least double the signalling messages that a “vanilla” SIP application requires. Additional LTE services (including SMS) are expected to exaggerate the number of signalling messages even further.

“Complex signalling is a key issue in modern networks because the tear down and set up of sessions happens so much,” says Tatipamula. “Signalling is a killer in mobile networks. But with multiple apps running on smartphones and smartphone adoption growing, signalling pain will only continue.” In a sense, the volume of traffic can always be solved in terms of the data plane by putting the traffic through traditional optimisation. The solution for signalling needs to be more creative.

Source: http://www.telecoms.com/121532/braving-the-signalling-storm/

Operator survey reveals evolving views on Rich Messaging market

3 Jan

The Art of Messaging

During it’s Rich Communications Conference in Berlin last November, Informa surveyed operator delegates on their views on RCS (Rich Communication Services) and the impact these will have on the mobile market. After analysing the results, what  was most interesting is the comparison between these results with those to an identical survey undertaken at Informa’s IMS World Forum earlier in the year. While the audiences were similar the outlooks had clearly evolved.  Here are the key trends:

The impact of joyn – In November, a lower percentage of operators (52.4% versus 69.6% in April) thought that the joyn initiative – the GSMA’s consumer brand and trade mark for RCS – is significantly accelerating the adoption of RCS services.  The change in position maybe down to the longer lead times in bringing joyn services to market and the reality that rich communication may take longer for consumer’s to adopt than originally anticipated…

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Vodafone investing for holistic approach in Rich Communications ecosystem

17 Dec

The Art of Messaging

As business models for mobile Person-to-Person communication have been reset, most mobile operators are in the process of setting up some kind of rich content and value added services play, in order to tap consumer and enterprise revenue streams.

Largely, this approach requires two steps:

  1. Set up a rich services platform for embedded network functions for rich and real time messaging, voice and video as well as supporting functionality such as billing and authentication. The GMSA’s Rich Communication Suite (RCS) is an excellent candidate to be such a platform, with the advantage of broad support across the industry,and also other technologies such as RTCWEB are important enablers.
  2. Provide accompanying APIs and Software Development Kits to give the developer community access to these network functions, along with appropriate business and licensing models that work across the mobile and the developer ecosystems.

Vodafone’s recent investment in Jibe Mobile seems to fit nicely in this…

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Suite Life

26 Nov
Skype could be the next big thing in the business world or Rich Communication Suite (RCS) could be instead. I recently came across a new way to communicate that is backed by the Global System for Mobile communication (GSM). This new application combines SMS and MMS messaging, voice and video calls, and file transferring. This new app can be used on almost any smartphone. The app uses an all-IP network. This means there is less broadband traffic and more reliance on the internet. The app also allows you to have group chats and not only with individuals.

I really think that this kind of app could make a big change in the world. It would allow people to communicate in the way that they live their lives. Nowadays everybody multitasks. They are on the phone and trying to send information all at the same time. This application would allow people to transfer their lifestyle into their mobile communication. This app could especially affect the business world. For example, someone could be on a video call and at the same time send the person or people at the other end of the call the file they are talking about. To make it even better, this could all be taking place on their smartphone instead of a computer.

In class we said that a flaw of Skype is not actually having a true social meeting. This could also be seen as a flaw of RCS. I agree that meeting someone in person is different than talking over a voice or video call. But on the other hand, this type of technology can be really helpful. For example, if two people in a company need to meet immediately to make a decision a face-to-face meeting is not possible. Using something like RCS makes this meeting happen right away. I think that RCS could be more widely used in the business world than Skype because it combines more options and can be done with mobile smartphones. In the fast pace business world we have today an app like this could be really helpful. What do you think?

Source: http://mi021.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/suite-life/

How to use rcs – a tutorial

31 Oct

Thoughts on computing

In an earlier post, I introduced “rcs” and indicated that I intended to provide a tutorial on how to use the package of commands.  This post will be that tutorial.  I shall explain how to use it for the kind of simple use an individual linux user might have.  I shall illustrate that with a shell script.

Hello world

Our simple shell script will be to display the string “Hello world” with a few later modifications.  And we shall be using the “rcs” package of commands to keep track of the modifications.

View original post 1,049 more words

Leveraging IMS for VoLTE and RCS Services in LTE Networks

30 Oct

ETSI Workshop – RCS VoLTE and Beyond
Adnan Saleem discusses the advantages of moving to VoLTE/RCS for mixed mobile operators – and addresses the key challenges along the way.

Source: http://www.slideshare.net/Radisys/radisys-msf-workshopvoltemrf1012-ppt-14939676

Operators Cannot Wait for RCSe to Combat OTT Threat

13 Oct

The Rich Communication Suite-enhanced (RCSe) is set to become, under the commercial brand Joyn, the ultimate operator answer to the threat to operators posed by over-the-top (OTT) communication applications such as WhatsApp and Apple’s iMessage. These OTT services, which are provided over the Internet, bypass the operator’s billing and service delivery infrastructure, threatening the growth of operators’ core voice and messaging revenue.

Initiated by the so-called Big Five European operators (Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telecom Italia, Telefonica and Vodafone), RCSe is a remarkable industry-wide effort. It extends the communication options in a mobile network beyond voice services and SMS/MMS messaging by providing a framework for IP mobile communication. But all industry-wide initiatives need time and agility —and RCSe has a short supply of both.  

RCSe has needed and still needs time to develop. From the initial announcement of the Rich Communication Suite (RCS) back in 2008, it has taken four years to get to RCSe/Joyn. In the meantime, the universe of third-party OTT communication services has grown considerably, and the challenge to operators has become more pressing. Furthermore, now that RCSe/Joyn is tangible and we have early adopters such as Vodafone in Germany, it could still take two to three years before RCSe/Joyn-capable handsets are widely available, despite the fact that most OEMs have officially committed to the initiative.

RCSe/Joyn has needed time to evolve and will need time to gain full support from operators, OEMs and network vendors before it can become the global standard for enhanced communication. While supporting RCSe, operators need alternative short- and medium-term OTT communication strategies to neutralize OTTs. We have recently analyzed various strategic options that operators have at their disposal when it comes to OTT communication. A few of these options include:

  • Blocking third-party apps and services: Blocking OTT communication can cause a backlash from customers, which will put operators under competitive threats when other players choose not to block. It can also cause clashes with regulators when it comes to net neutrality.
  • Neutralizing the effects of OTT communication through pricing:One way to achieve this is by offering integrated plans combining all three core services (voice, SMS and data) in one single bundled price. Another way is by increasing SMS bundles and decreasing data caps to encourage SMS usage over popular OTT services. Alternatively, operators can offer app-centric data plans, giving their customers access to clusters of selected OTT applications, under a strategy that offsets SMS cannibalization caused by third-party OTTs by boosting data usage. In the long term, neither approach is likely to protect operators from price pressures. In the case of integrated plans, as OTTs become more attractive and widespread, customers will eventually reduce the usage of inclusive SMSs and will start demanding to pay less. In the case of app-based plans, they will become increasingly less profitable as the growth of data-hungry applications will reduce the price-per-MB ratio.
  • Operators launching their own proprietary OTT services: Quick time-to-market is the key benefit of this strategy, as demonstrated by Telefonica, which developed and launched its OTT service Tu Me in under 100 days. Operators also have the opportunity to gain experience in Internet services and business models, such as ad-based and freemium models, and embrace what Pyramid Research calls the trial-and-error startup mentality. These proprietary OTT services will face tough competition from established OTT players, and many of them will result in failure. However, this new approach and mentality can only benefit operators, enabling them to introduce new services more rapidly and to be more responsive to consumer demand.

If operators do not want to be sidelined,  they will eventually need to be able to offer the same rich experience that Internet services provide, by either launching their own services or by partnering with OTTs.

xhibit: Operator’s OTT communication strategies: Time-to-execute, long-term sustainability and consumer friendliness

Source: Pyramid Research

Source: http://www.pyramidresearch.com/points/item/121011.htm

GENBAND Showcases RCS Voice over LTE Capabilities at MSF/ETSI/GSMA Interoperability Test Event

11 Oct
Frisco, Texas, October 10, 2012GENBAND, a leading developer of IP infrastructure and application solutions, today announced its participation in the Rich Communication Suite (RCS) Voice over LTE (VoLTE) Interoperability Test Event organized by MSF, ETSI and GSMA. The A2™ Communications Application Server  is functioning as the VoLTE application server and RCS application server during the tests, which are being conducted using LTE radio access network infrastructure equipment.

The RCS VoLTE IOT Event is being hosted by China Mobile at the China Mobile Research Institute Laboratory in Beijing, China and by Telecom Slovenia Group in Sintesio, Kranj, Slovenia. The GENBAND Application Server is being deployed in both locations.

“Today service providers are actively examining options for offering the latest RCS VoLTE capabilities and this leading interoperability test event is an ideal forum for GENBAND to showcase the comprehensive carrier-ready capabilities of our A2 Application Server,” said B.G. Kumar, President of GENBAND’s Multimedia Business Unit. “As customers look to deploy RCS VoLTE services, they can rely on the A2 platform to provide the most comprehensive set of IP applications, including business VoLTE services, extensive fixed and mobile services, and support for web clients.”

As the VoLTE application server for the event, the A2 Communications Application Server is providing MMTEL voice service, integrated SCC (service centralization and continuity) and MRF (media resource functionality). It is also supporting the Ut interface, enabling VoLTE clients to control MMTEL services user settings.  Acting as the RCS application server, the A2 is supporting OPTIONS-based capability discovery, video sharing, image-sharing and instant messaging via session and pager mode.

GENBAND’s market-leading application server is the only application server that has fully integrated multimedia applications for voice, video, conferencing, instant messaging, presence, collaboration and mobility. The A2 is also the only application server that works in TDM, IP and IMS networks simultaneously for hybrid network deployments. The A2’s integrated wireless mobility manager allows for mobile integration with any mobile phone for services such as fixed mobile convergence, voice over LTE, Mobile Office and mobile unified communications.

“The RCS VoLTE Interoperability event reflects the MSF’s commitment to carrier-driven interoperability events that validate key emerging standards and technologies, including key network interfaces that ensure multi-vendor deployment strategies for RCS/LTE/EPC/IMS technology,” said Kyu-Ouk Lee, MSF President. “We are pleased that GENBAND is participating at the 2012 event.”

Backed by major operators China Mobile, Verizon and Telecom Slovenia, the event builds on the success of the previous MSF VoLTE Interoperability Event that took place in September 2011. Continued support of interoperability events reflect the commitment of the MSF, ETSI and GSMA to conduct important carrier-driven events that benefit all members in their quest to keep in front of the pace of change in a quickly evolving industry.

About the MSF

The MultiService Forum (www.msforum.org) is a global association of service providers, system suppliers and test equipment vendors committed to developing and promoting open-architecture, multiservice Next Generation Networks. Founded in 1998, the MSF is an open-membership organization comprised of the world’s leading telecommunications companies. The MSF’s activities include developing Implementation Agreements, promoting worldwide compatibility and interoperability of network elements, and encouraging input to appropriate national and international standards bodies.

About GSMA
The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. Spanning more than 220 countries, the GSMA unites nearly 800 of the world’s mobile operators, as well as more than 200 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers, Internet companies, and media and entertainment organisations. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Expo.

 Source: http://www.genband.com/media-center/press-releases/genband-showcases-rcs-voice-over-lte-capabilities-msfetsigsma-interopera

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