By Beecher Tuttle
Today's service providers are faced with quite a predicament. Consumers' insatiable demand for innovative, next-generation communication services has put a great deal of pressure on them to build out networks that are capable of handling the load.
Unfortunately, the economic recession has made this process difficult for service providers, which need to minimize their own operating expenses just like every other business. On top of all of this, operators must keep a watchful eye on the negative impact that their technologies can have on the environment.
Alcatel-Lucent's industry-leading IMS End-to-End solution can help service providers respond to all three of these concerns.
The Alcatel-Lucent IMS solution can supplement traditional fixed line time-division multiplexing (TDM) switches, which are currently responsible for most of today's voice traffic. The problem with TDM networks is that they require a great deal of power.
In 2009, there were an estimated 12,347 fixed line TDM switches in the U.S, according to a recent Alcatel-Lucent white paper, Alcatel-Lucent IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS): Eco-efficiency Makes Economic Sense. This means that the switches consume over 2 billion kWh of electricity annually just to operate, plus another 1.1 billion kWh for cooling.
To put that in perspective, TDM switches consume nearly the same amount of total energy as 16 percent of the 2.3 million households in the greater New York City area. That is a lot of power just to connect voice traffic.
In comparison to eco-efficient IMS solutions, TDM networks have a negative impact on the environment and on a service provider's wallet. The power required to operate the nearly 13,000 switches results in a whopping 1.7 billion kg of CO2 added to our atmosphere every year. This is the equivalent of adding another 361,000 cars to our roads.
The efficient nature of an IMS network can help the U.S. reduce its carbon footprint both directly and indirectly. Alcatel-Lucent's ability to connect the world through video conferencing, presence aware messaging and anytime access can allow service providers to help the nation go green by eliminating the need to travel in many instances.
The unnecessary power consumption of TDM switches cost telecom operators around $343 million in 2009. In addition, the sheer size of TDM switches take up a combined 1,276,000-feet of space, which adds another $53.6 million to the equation, not to mention a wider carbon footprint. Multiple TDM switches can be replaced by a single IMS solution, resulting in additional OPEX savings.
IMS solutions do more than just provide eco-efficiency and reduced operating expenses. They also create new revenue and market opportunities for service providers.
With IMS technology, operators can provide end users with voice, video, web, messaging, and other communication tools through a variety of mediums, including tablets, mobile phones, PCs and televisions.
Compared to a TDM network, IMS solutions can reduce a service provider's economic and environmental impact by 90 percent, all while adding new revenues opportunities.
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