Study: Softswitch use underway, carriers commit to more
Pondering the extent of softswitch use? A study from the International Softswitch Consortium says 67 percent of the RBOCs and 43 percent of the inter-exchange carriers surveyed already carry live customer traffic on a softswitch, and carriers are committed to more.
Current & Planned Uses of Softswitches and Next Generation Networks in the U.S., commissioned by ISC and conducted by Research First Consulting, says "a large number of ILECs and IXCs are considering future softswitch deployments and have already begun testing softswitches, or have issued requests for information or proposals."
Likewise, the most popular softswitch applications were Internet offload, cited by 20 percent of respondents; Class 4 replacement, with 26 percent response; and expanding revenue, from 19 percent of respondents.
ISC says it commissioned the survey to "examine current deployments and favored softswitch applications," and to determine carriers' commitment to future technologies. The survey also covered deployment challenges and timeframes.
"It's critical for softswitch vendors to have a good sense of carrier deployment plans in order for them to tailor their marketing and sales strategies," says ISC President Ike Elliott, in a statement.
RFC sampled a group of service providers that included ILECs, IXCs, ISPs, CLECs and wireless providers, ISC says. Those polled have engineering or technical management positions, and purchase or specify central office and transmission equipment.