Next week I will be on a panel at IT EXPO 2012 discussing the benefits of transitioning from TDM to SIP Trunking. I have spoken on this subject quite often and will dedicate this blog and Monday’s blog to the subject. However, in addition to understanding the benefits of SIP Trunking, it is just as important to appreciate the supposed and real weaknesses of employing SIP Trunking in your communications infrastructure.
Earlier this year I covered the SIP Survey 2012 generated by the SIP School which summarizes the opinions and experiences of more than 400 industry professionals with SIP (Session Initiation Protocol). It is an excellent update on the growth and importance of SIP Trunks to service providers as a revenue source and to businesses as a better way to communicate. However, it does identify problems various organizations have faced in executing SIP Trunking projects. Some of the issues are the result of not understanding the difference between VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and SIP.
VoIP is the simplest method in which a business can experience convergence or the merging of voice and data over the same broadband. In addition to reducing the cost of communications, convergence optimizes bandwidth utilization. However, this results in the need for tools to monitor usage and prioritize the packet traffic. Most of the time voice is given priority due to its real-time nature, but there are certain applications and business environments where data may be given priority for usually scheduled periods of time. Without proper management VoIP may be in correctly blamed for any perceived or real network performance deterioration.
Simple VoIP is not the same thing as actually using the SIP protocol to manage voice/call sessions. With SIP, IT is given additional management control over calls and enablement to address some packetized voice issues. SIP was developed to address the problems characteristic to VoIP and supports applications that can enrich the caller’s experience.
Finally, because the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) implemented what many refer to loosely as a standard for SIP, implementations have varied and SIP is not yet plug and play. The newest version or SIPConnect 1.1 will improve interoperability and the SIP Forum is driving adoption of it by the OEMs, developers and service providers. As the chief marketing officer at ANPI ZONE, I applaud their efforts and will certainly include them in my comments on the panel at IT EXPO.
IT EXPO 2012
The session “The Conversion from TDM to SIP: Evaluating the Benefits of SIP Trunking” is Thursday, October 4th at 3:00 PM. I look forward to seeing you in Austin.