What is a Softswitch in telecom?
A Softswitch, short for software switch, is a central component in telecommunications networks that enables the routing and control of voice, data, and multimedia communication sessions. It acts as a bridge between the traditional public switched telephone networks (PSTN) and internet protocol (IP) networks, facilitating the transition to modern communication technologies.
Softswitches are software-based systems that handle call signaling, call routing, and call control functions. They replace the traditional hardware-based switches used in older telephone networks. Softswitch technology allows for the efficient management of voice and data traffic, enabling various advanced features and services.
In telecommunications, a soft switch performs several essential functions. These include:
Call Control: Softswitches manage the initiation, termination, and control of calls. They handle call setup, call routing, call transfer, call forwarding, and call termination processes. Softswitches ensure that calls are efficiently connected and seamlessly transferred between different network endpoints.
Protocol Conversion: Softswitches facilitate the conversion between different communication protocols. They can convert traditional circuit-switched protocols (such as SS7) to IP-based protocols (such as SIP) and vice versa. This allows for the integration of diverse communication networks and ensures compatibility between different systems.
Media Processing: Softswitches often include media processing capabilities. They can perform tasks such as voice compression, echo cancellation, jitter buffering, and quality of service (QoS) management. These features enhance the quality and reliability of voice and multimedia communication.
Intelligent Routing: Softswitches employ intelligent routing algorithms to determine the most efficient path for call delivery. They consider factors such as cost, network congestion, quality metrics, and predefined routing rules. Intelligent routing helps optimize call quality, minimize costs, and improve network efficiency.
Service Provisioning: Softswitches support the provision of various value-added services. These can include voicemail, call recording, call conferencing, interactive voice response (IVR), and advanced call analytics. Softswitches provide the foundation for delivering feature-rich and customizable communication solutions.
Scalability and Flexibility: Softswitches are highly scalable, allowing for the handling of large call volumes and accommodating business growth. They can be easily expanded by adding more server capacity or virtual instances. Softswitches also offer flexibility in terms of supporting different communication devices and endpoints.
Softswitches have revolutionized the telecommunications industry by enabling the convergence of voice, data, and multimedia services. They provide a flexible and cost-effective solution for modern communication needs. Whether it is routing calls over the internet, integrating different communication protocols, or offering advanced features, softswitch technology plays a crucial role in powering seamless and efficient telecommunications networks.
What is a VoIP switch?
A VoIP switch, also known as an IP switch or IP PBX, is a device or software application that facilitates the routing and management of Voice over IP (VoIP) calls. It serves as a central component in a VoIP network, enabling the conversion of analog voice signals into digital packets that can be transmitted over IP-based networks.
A VoIP switch performs similar functions to a traditional telephone switch, but it operates in the digital realm using IP protocols. It handles call routing, signaling, and control functions, allowing for the establishment, maintenance, and termination of VoIP calls. The switch manages the conversion of voice signals into IP packets, as well as the reverse process when receiving packets and converting them back into voice signals.
VoIP switches are typically designed to support both internal (on-network) and external (off-network) calls. They provide features such as call routing, call forwarding, call waiting, conference calling, voicemail, and caller ID. Additionally, they often incorporate security measures like encryption and authentication to ensure the privacy and integrity of voice communications.
VoIP switches can be implemented using hardware-based devices or software-based applications. Hardware-based VoIP switches are typically specialized appliances that integrate the necessary hardware components and interfaces for VoIP communication. Software-based VoIP switches, also known as Softswitches, run on standard servers and leverage virtualization technologies to provide the required functionality.
VoIP switches are commonly used by businesses, service providers, and enterprises to build and operate their VoIP networks. They enable cost-effective voice communication by leveraging the benefits of IP-based technology, such as reduced infrastructure costs, flexible scalability, and integration with other IP-based services.
In summary, a VoIP switch is a key element in a VoIP network that manages the routing, signaling, and control of VoIP calls. It enables the transmission of voice over IP-based networks, offering a range of features and functionality to support efficient and cost-effective voice communication.
What is Softswitch architecture?
Softswitch architecture refers to the design and structure of a software-based telecommunications switching system. It is a network architecture that replaces traditional hardware-based switches with software applications running on general-purpose servers. Softswitches are key components in Voice over IP (VoIP) networks and enable the routing and control of voice, video, and data communications.
The architecture of a Softswitch typically consists of two main components: the call control component and the media handling component.
Call Control Component: This component is responsible for handling signaling and call control functions. It manages the setup, routing, and termination of calls. The call control component uses signaling protocols such as Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), H.323, or Media Gateway Control Protocol (MGCP) to establish and control communication sessions between users. It also performs functions like call admission control, numbering plan management, and implementing various telephony features.
Media Handling Component: The media handling component deals with the actual transmission of voice, video, and data streams. It includes functions such as codec negotiation, media packetization, jitter control, echo cancellation, and quality of service (QoS) management. This component ensures that the media streams are properly encoded, transmitted, and decoded during a communication session.
Softswitch architectures can be classified into two main types:
Class 4 Softswitch: A Class 4 Softswitch is designed for handling large volumes of traffic between different service providers or carrier networks. It primarily focuses on long-distance or interexchange calls. Class 4 Softswitches provide features like call routing, traffic management, and protocol conversion.
Class 5 Softswitch: A Class 5 Softswitch is designed for handling local exchange or end-office functions. It serves as the primary interface for end-users, providing services such as call routing, call control, and value-added features. Class 5 Softswitches are typically deployed by service providers to deliver voice services to residential and business customers.
Softswitch architecture offers several advantages over traditional hardware-based switches. It provides flexibility, scalability, and cost-effectiveness by leveraging standard servers and virtualization technologies. Softswitches can be easily upgraded, expanded, and integrated with other network elements. They enable service providers to deliver a wide range of multimedia services, integrate voice with data networks, and adapt to evolving communication technologies.
What is a Class 5 Softswitch?
In telecommunication, a Class 5 Softswitch refers to a software-based switching system that operates at the local exchange or end office level in a telephone network. It is a central component in a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) infrastructure, allowing the routing and management of voice calls between different users.
The phrase “Class 5” originates from the conventional telephony structure, wherein Class 5 switches serve as the local exchange switches that manage the final connections to end-users. In contrast, Class 4 switches handle interexchange or long-distance traffic, and Class 3 switches are used for international or gateway connections.
A Class 5 Softswitch provides various features and functionalities similar to traditional telephone switches, including call routing, call processing, call control, billing, and value-added services. It enables service providers to offer voice services over IP networks, allowing for cost savings, scalability, and flexibility.
With a Class 5 Softswitch, service providers can deliver a range of telephony services such as local and long-distance calling, voicemail, call waiting, caller ID, call forwarding, and more. It acts as a bridge between the traditional public switched telephone networks (PSTN) and IP-based networks, facilitating the seamless integration of voice services across different platforms.
Best Wholesale VoIP Softswitches
In the world of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) communication, choosing the right wholesale softswitch is crucial for businesses that provide voice services to their clients. A wholesale VoIP Softswitch acts as the backbone of a service provider’s infrastructure, enabling efficient call routing, billing, and overall management of voice traffic. To help you make an informed decision, we have curated a list of the best wholesale VoIP Softswitches available in the market today. These Softswitches offer a comprehensive set of features, exceptional reliability, and scalability to meet the demanding requirements of wholesale VoIP service providers.
1. Fusion Core by Voicebuy
Fusion Core by Voicebuy is a powerful wholesale VoIP softswitch that combines advanced routing capabilities with comprehensive billing and reporting functionalities. It offers intelligent call routing algorithms, ensuring optimal call quality and cost efficiency. Fusion Core’s user-friendly interface allows for easy management of customer accounts, rates, and routing rules. With built-in fraud detection mechanisms and real-time monitoring, Fusion Core provides enhanced security and operational control.
2. PortaSwitch by PortaOne
PortaSwitch by PortaOne is a feature-rich wholesale softswitch designed for VoIP service providers. It offers a wide range of capabilities, including intelligent routing, real-time billing, and integrated customer management tools. PortaSwitch supports various protocols and codecs, allowing seamless integration with different networks and endpoints. With its high scalability and extensive API library, PortaSwitch enables service providers to expand their operations and deliver innovative voice services.
3. NexOSS by NexTone
NexOSS by NexTone is a carrier-grade wholesale softswitch that offers advanced call routing and traffic management features. It provides real-time analysis of network performance, ensuring optimal call quality and efficient resource utilization. NexOSS supports multiple protocols and offers flexible routing configurations, allowing service providers to tailor their call-routing strategies based on specific requirements. With its robust reporting and analytics capabilities, NexOSS enables data-driven decision-making for VoIP service providers.
4. Mera MVTS by MERA
Mera MVTS is a renowned softswitch solution trusted by wholesale VoIP providers worldwide. It offers advanced routing capabilities, including dynamic least-cost routing, quality-based routing, and load balancing. Mera MVTS provides comprehensive call analysis and reporting tools, empowering service providers to optimize their operations and drive revenue growth. With its high scalability and reliability, Mera MVTS is suitable for large-scale wholesale voice traffic management.
5. VoIP Softswitch by VOS3000
VoIP Softswitch by VOS3000 is a robust wholesale softswitch that caters to the needs of both small and large VoIP service providers. It supports various call routing strategies, including LCR (Least Cost Routing) and QoS (Quality of Service) routing. VOS3000 offers extensive billing and reporting functionalities, allowing service providers to efficiently manage customer accounts, rates, and invoices. With its flexible configuration options and multi-level security features, VOS3000 provides a stable and secure platform for wholesale VoIP operations.
FreeSWITCH is an open-source wholesale softswitch that provides flexibility and customization options for VoIP service providers. It offers a versatile set of features, including robust call routing, media handling, and conference bridging. FreeSWITCH’s modular architecture allows for easy integration with other systems and applications, making it highly adaptable to unique business requirements. With its active community support and continuous development, FreeSWITCH offers a cost-effective solution for wholesale VoIP providers seeking flexibility and control.
In the competitive landscape of the telecommunications industry, selecting the right softswitch vendor is paramount to the success of your business. A Softswitch vendor plays a crucial role in empowering efficient communication solutions, enabling seamless call routing, robust billing management, and scalability for your voice services. After careful evaluation and analysis, we have provided you with a comprehensive list of the top softswitch vendors in the market today. Now, it’s time to summarize the key takeaways and guide you toward making an informed decision.