Three weeks ago, I wrote about the benefits that Session Border Controllers (SBCs) can have for both service providers and enterprises. This week, I’d like to talk about some new applications that SBCs can help enable.
Traditionally, there have been two general "use cases" for an SBC:
- As an "interconnect" device located at the "peering" border, or Network-to-Network Interface (NNI), between interconnecting carrier network
- As an "access" device, in which the SBC protects the edge of a service provider network and provides SIP trunking to an enterprise.
But now, other applications are emerging that leverage the transformation, security and connection capabilities that SBCs provide. Some of these applications include:
Value Added Services: In today’s increasingly complex and competitive communications marketplace, it’s pretty common for some service providers to have much of their revenue attributed to different types of Value Added Services (VAS) such as text messaging, enhanced TV, video conferencing and video on demand, m-commerce, tele-shopping, voice and video mail, Internet access, communal gaming, interactive advertising and subscription gaming. SBCs deployed in VAS applications can be instrumental in helping service providers accelerate the time to market for such services, and in turn can contribute to a service provider’s top-line revenue.
VPNs: A service provider may use an SBC in offering VPN services to customers to bridge calls across customer VPN sites. This can allow VoIP calls (and other IP transmission) between customers in different VPNs that are provided by the same service provider. The SBC in the service provider network is then configured to be a member of each VPN and thus routable to each.
IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS): In IMS networks, SBCs can provide call session control and border gateway functions at both NNIs (carrier-to-carrier connections) and UNIs (carrier-to-customer connections). While IMS relies on SIP as the primary session control protocol, there are extensions in the applicable architecture standards (for example 3GPP) that SBCs will need to support. Access control, interworking, policy enforcement, DoS protection and topology hiding capabilities of SBCs make them well suited for use in the IMS architecture.
Enterprise Applications: As stated above, an SBC can facilitate interoperability among service provider networks and enterprise equipment, providing the enterprise customer with the flexibility to choose “best-of-breed” solutions that enable them to also take advantage of innovative service provider applications.
I hope this blog and my two other blogs on SBCs have helped you understand the importance of Session Border Controllers, and how they can help transform, connect and secure today’s many different types of networks. If you want to learn more about SBCs, download our free white paper.
You can also check out Dialogic’s family of session border controller solutions. Did you know that our BorderNet 4000 SBC was recently awarded Miercom’s Performance Verification certification for unmatched performance for an SBC in a 1 RU appliance? You can download the full Miercom report, or read the press release.