Cedar Point Communications is looking to reinvigorate the cable VoIP market with a new way to employ its products that should make it easier to migrate toward PacketCable 2.0 (PC 2.0) and IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) architectures for carrier-class residential and business communications services.

PacketCable 2.0 currently defines a configuration of different systems that cable operators can integrate to migrate toward an IMS network. The approach was designed to allow MSOs to mix and match best-of-breed network components.

“It turned out you couldn’t build a network that way,” said Cedar Point director of marketing Jim Gayton. “It just wasn’t tenable.”

The basic premise of the Cedar Point solution, based on a new switch platform called SafariFusion, is to draw multiple, previously distributed functions into the company’s own switch, allowing cable operators to evolve toward PC 2.0/IMS.

Cedar Point looks at IMS implementations as having an application/services layer, a control layer and an access/transport layer (see accompanying diagram), each with multiple systems required. “Think of it as lots of boxes,” said Gayton.

Click on image to enlarge.
Cedar Point’s SafariFusion approach aims to simplify the old PacketCable 2.0/IMS structure by offering the option to combine previously distributed functions in a single system. Source: Cedar Point. (click on image to enlarge.)

Cedar Point, he explained, thinks cable operators can make the migration to IMS much quicker, easier and effective by chucking that complex configuration. “Cedar Point is going for one device per layer,” Gayton told CED.

The new SafariFusion Application Platform (AP) comes with two initial applications that operators can deploy to begin a measured migration to PC 2.0/IMS.

Those first two applications include the SafariFusion Residential Communication Application (RCA) for residential services and the SafariFusion Registration and Routing Application (RRA) to simplify network registration, routing and service roaming, the company said.

The company said its new RCA application supports the features within the PacketCable 2.0 Residential SIP Telephony specification, including call forwarding, call waiting and others.  The RRA has been designed to combine the functionality of multiple IMS elements, including the Interrogating Call Session Control Function (I-CSCF), the Serving Call Session Control Function (S-CSCF), the Home Subscriber Server (HSS) and the Breakout Gateway Control Function.

Though Cedar Point is clearly planning new applications of its own, it said it has based its SafariFusion platform on open standards, making it entirely hospitable for hosting applications from other companies. SafariFusion can function in a multi-vendor configuration or as part of a total Cedar Point solution, the company said.

In addition, Cedar Point has announced new functionality for the company’s existing Safari C3 Multimedia Switching System that enables a gradual migration to PC 2.0/IMS architectures. Operators can use the C3 to simultaneously support NCS, SIP and IMS endpoints and allow for use of PC 2.0/IMS applications by legacy subscribers.

The Media Gateway Control Function (MGCF), Media Resource Function Controller (MRFC) and Access Gateway Control Function (AGCF) allow operators to overlay PC 2.0/IMS networks on top of existing Safari C3 deployments without disturbing the legacy network-based call signaling (NCS) endpoints. Cable operators can migrate NCS endpoints at their own pace and can begin to deploy PC 2.0/IMS services without adding additional network elements, Cedar Point explained.

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