October 6, 2004
Advanced Interworking and Routing Functionalities in MERA VoIPal SBC Ensure Carrier-to-Enterprise and Enterprise-to-Enterprise Connectivity.
Toronto, ON, Canada – October 6th, 2004 – MERA Systems, a leading supplier of carrier-class session controllers, today announced that it has enhanced its VoIPal Session Border Controller with SIP interworking features and routing mechanisms. The new set of capabilities enables ‘pure’ VoIP interconnection of multivendor IP PBXs with each other as well as with the carrier’s network, irrespective of the signaling protocol employed.
MERA VoIPal is designed specifically to address the compatibility requirements of medium to large businesses that operate multiple IP PBXs deployed at geographically dispersed corporate offices. Since every vendor delivers its own implementation of VoIP standards, many call management services (call forward, call transfer etc.) often cannot be processed correctly by the carrier’s equipment or IP PBXs from other manufacturers. Furthermore, even single-vendor solutions may implement protocols differently, as VoIP is constantly evolving.
To overcome interworking challenges, carriers and enterprises interconnect their networks via PSTN, which is costly and affects voice quality. Today, MERA is offering an SBC that enables a ‘pure’ VoIP interconnection of IP PBXs with each other and with the service provider’s network. MERA VoIPal SBC performs two-way SIP/H.323 translation, fixes inconsistencies between protocol dialects, and converts media codecs to guarantee ready carrier-to-enterprise and enterprise-to-enterprise connectivity, as well as correct processing of vendor-specific telephony features.
MERA VoIPal now provides for better connectivity between IP PBXs deployed in far-flung locations of a single enterprise. This functionality has been proven in tests and real-life operation. More specifically, VoIPal SBC has successfully passed laboratory tests accomplished by BELAM Telecom, Inc., a NORTEL Networks authorized distributor. During the test runs, MERA VoIPal ensured effective interoperation of NORTEL Networks’ Communication Server and BCM with carrier-class networks, and NORTEL Networks’ carrier-grade Multimedia Communication Server (MCS 5100) with enterprise IP PBXs via SIP. Beside Nortel Networks, the MERA VoIPal compatibility list includes Alcatel, Cisco Systems, Siemens, VocalTec and other leading IP PBX vendors.
Call routing between multi-site office locations
Another important feature that enhances enterprise-to-enterprise connectivity is the ability to concentrate and route VoIP traffic originating from all the IP PBXs deployed in a corporate network. MERA VoIPal now comes with intrinsic routing tools that distribute calls between the available service providers based on a set of predefined rules – day of week / time of day, source / destination number, source IP address etc. This functionality allows for selection of the optimal route for every call and is highly instrumental in reducing operational costs. In this way, MERA VoIPal serves as the management center for the entire enterprise network, coordinating voice and multimedia circulation between geographically distributed office locations.
Secure interconnection of multiple IP PBXs via public Internet
Most IP PBXs cannot be interconnected with each other via public Internet for security reasons. To protect the network from unauthorized access, enterprises have to deploy costly VPNs or use leased lines when interconnecting the multitude of office locations. MERA VoIPal provides a graceful and cost-effective solution to the enterprise security requirements. MERA VoIPal functions as a full-featured application-layer firewall. It performs the necessary screening of VoIP traffic and provides call admission control (CAC), thereby protecting the enterprise VoIP network against security threats such as DoS attacks or unauthorized access. In brief, VoIPal is a comprehensive solution that, along with interworking and routing capabilities, offers VoIP firewall functions to safeguard the integrity of the corporate network.
“MERA VoIPal is a powerful complement to Nortel Networks’ IP PBX solutions,says Alexey Zakharov, Sales Director of BELAM, Inc. ”By enabling ‘pure’ VoIP interconnection between enterprise locations and the carrier’s facility, MERA VoIPal provides our customers with a simplified and cost-effective network infrastructure and improved voice quality. The recent tests have proven that MERA VoIPal ensures connectivity of Nortel Networks’ MCS 5100 with enterprise networks under the SIP standard. Since about 90% of office applications are SIP-based, direct SIP connectivity between enterprise and carrier networks is becoming a hot topic in the VoIP world. MERA VoIPal is adding value to the best-of-breed technologies such as MCS by Nortel Networks, enabling carriers and enterprises alike to maximize the efficiency of their VoIP communications.”
“Now that migration to IP Telephony is no longer a question of ‘if’ but rather a question of ‘when’ for most enterprises, carriers explore new customer interconnection opportunities,” says Natalya Korobkova, Marketing Director for MERA Systems. “MERA is committed to addressing the connectivity and security challenges enterprises face in establishing direct IP-to-IP links between multiple office locations or interconnecting to service providers. MERA VoIPal is designed to supply the missing link between carrier and enterprise networks, bridging ‘islands of VoIP’ into a fully integrated communication infrastructure.”
MERA VoIPal SBC is available through the channel partners of major IP PBX vendors including Nortel Networks, Avaya and others.