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Thursday, 27 September 2012

SBC History and market

History and market

The history of SBCs shows that several corporations were involved in creating and popularizing the SBC market segment for carriers and enterprises. The original carrier-oriented SBC companies are (or were, since several have been acquired or are defunct): Acme Packet, Kagoor Networks (acquired in 2005 by Juniper Networks now offering a router-integrated solution), Jasomi Networks (acquired in 2005 by Ditech Communications, now known as Ditech Networks), Netrake (acquired in 2006 by Audiocodes), Newport Networks (now out of business), NexTone (first merged with Reef Point to form Nextpoint, and later purchased by Genband), Aravox (acquired in 2003 by Alcatel and terminated) and Emergent Network Solutions (acquired in 2006 by Stratus Technologies and in 2009 spun off as Stratus Telecommunications), and Sonus Networks. According to Jonathan Rosenberg, the author of RFC 3261 (SIP) and numerous other related RFCs, Dynamicsoft actually developed the first working SBC in conjunction with Aravox, but the product never truly gained marketshare.[citation needed] Five companies also played a major role in delivering enterprise-oriented SBCs: Jasomi Networks with its PeerPoint product line, Nable Communications, Edgewater, Borderware, and Ingate.
Of these companies, Newport Networks was the first to have an IPO on the London Stock Exchange's AIM in May 2004 (NNG). Acme Packet followed in October 2006 by floating on the NASDAQ, and is the market segment leader. With the field narrowed by acquisition, NexTone merged with Reefpoint becoming Nextpoint, which was subsequently acquired in 2008 by Genband.
At this same time, there emerged the “integrated” SBC where the border control function was integrated into another edge device. The strategy around integrated SBCs was to minimize devices, provide power and packaging savings, and tightly couple complementary functions. The demarcation points where SBCs are located already include IP routers; therefore a logical approach to the proliferation of SBC devices is to integrate the SBC functionality into the already existing routers. Such integration offers savings in the capital and operational costs, reduces floor-space, lowers power consumption and makes managing the network easier. In addition, it allows significant optimization of certain aspects of the network such as VPN interconnection and scalability[3] and thus provides significant value in case of distributed network designs. Cisco is a leader in the “integrated” SBC space with its Cisco Unified Border Element (CUBE) product line, addressing campus, branch office, and service provider environments.
The continuing growth of VoIP networks pushes SBCs further to the edge, mandating adaptation in capacity and complexity. As the VoIP network grows and traffic volume increases, more and more sessions are passing through SBC devices. Vendors are addressing these new scale requirements in a variety of ways. Some have developed of separate, load balancing systems to sit in front of SBC clusters. Others, have developed new architectures using the latest generation chipsets offering higher performance SBCs and scalability using service cards.



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